Trade Your Dance Bun For One of These Classic Braids
Bored with buns? We broke down the basics of three classic, class-perfect braids.
Modeled by Haley Hilton
Photography by Jayme Thornton
1. Gather a small section of hair from just above your ears.
2. Divide that section evenly in thirds.
3. Cross one third over the other two, as if making a regular braid, to create an "anchor" for the French braid.
4. As you cross the next third over, add in some hair from the side of your head.
5. Keep adding in pieces of hair from the sides of your head as you braid.
6. When you reach the nape of your neck, finish the tail of your hair with a regular braid. Secure the end with an elastic.
Tip: If you have very long hair, rake your fingers through the tail of each section as you cross it over, so the ends don't begin to twist.
1. Make a ponytail and divide it evenly in half.
2. Twist each section into a loose rope.
3. Begin to wind the two sections around each other, continuing to twist each one individually as you create the larger rope.
4. Keep twisting and winding until you reach the end of the ponytail. Secure the end with an elastic.
Tip: Product is especially important for this braid. A spray wax is the best option, because it stays flexible longer than hairspray, allowing you to twist your hair more easily.
1. Gather a small section of hair from behind your ears, divide it evenly in thirds, and cross the right third over the other two to create an "anchor," as if beginning a French braid.
2. Pull out a 1/2-inch strand of hair from underneath the left side of the braid. Cross that strand over to the opposite side, pulling it tight.
3. Pull a 1/2-inch strand of hair from underneath the right side of the braid and cross that one to the opposite side, tightly holding the weaving you've already done.
4. Continue pulling small strands from underneath each side of the braid and crossing them over. You should see the signature "fishtail" look emerge after crossing five or six sections.
5. Keep going until you run out of hair. Secure the end of the tail with an elastic.
Tip: If your hair is fine and/or slippery, before you get braiding, prep it with a mousse or gel to give it a little grip.
A version of this story appeared in the March 2018 issue of Dance Spirit with the title "#Braidspiration."
Get in, losers. We're going to Broadway.
OK, not losers, actually—more like the bajillion die-hard fans of Tina Fey's 2004 cult hit Mean Girls, who've been wearing pink every Wednesday since a musical adaptation of the film was first teased back in 2013.
Now their world is like a cake filled with rainbows and smiles, because Mean Girls the musical, which had a trial run in Washington, DC, last fall, is set to open at Broadway's August Wilson Theatre April 8. And in a very grool twist, it turns out the show—with direction and choreography by Casey Nicholaw and a book by Fey herself—is delightfully dancey.
What do you get when a hoard of dancers collaborate to the catchy tune of "Love Somebody," by the band Frenship? The most epic dance party ever, of course! Said dance party was produced by the talented Michael Riccio, who's performed in feature films, including "Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen" and "Shrek Forever After."
Today in Ballet Dancers Are Actual Superheroes news:
You've no doubt heard that the fabulous Alicia Vikander is playing Lara Croft in the newest iteration of Tomb Raider, which hits movie theaters this Friday. But while her training for the high-octane action role was crazy tough, she says, studying at the Royal Swedish Ballet School was far tougher.
They say there's no "I" in "team"—and nowhere is that truer than the world of college dance teams, where precision reigns, uniformity is key, and a single misstep from any given "I" can cost a group a championship trophy. So it's unsurprising that securing a spot on one of the best dance teams in the country is no easy feat.
Members of these highly athletic teams rehearse for hours every week—on top of academic classes and commitments—and perform at football and basketball games, annual concerts, and nationally televised competitions (hi, ESPN). And "no I" rule notwithstanding, each of these top teams is made up of highly trained, highly technical, highly hard-core individuals, who come together to create a ready-for-victory pack.
These six teams aren't one-off success stories—they're consistently strong, and earn the top spots at major competitions like UDA and NDA nearly every year. Up for the challenge? Here's what to know before you go to auditions.
Are you a high school senior who's been accepted to a four-year accredited college or university program? Congrats! Within the 2017-2018 season, have you competed in events run by at least two of the organizations in the above graphic? Double congrats, because the Association of Dance Conventions and Competitions, or ADCC for short, wants to give you $1,000 (!!) towards college tuition.
From dancing in music videos (including Katy Perry's "Swish Swish") to performing on reality TV shows (including "Dancing with the Stars" and "The Voice"), 17-year-old Amanda LaCount is already conquering the commercial scene. If you've ever seen her dance, you understand why: She's a hard-hitting phenom with major stage presence. But in an industry where not having the "right" look can jeopardize your career, Amanda's also blazed her own path by accepting her beautiful curvy body the way it is.
Amanda's never let body-shamers discourage her from going after her dreams. She hopes that by breaking the "dancers are skinny" stereotype, she'll give others the courage to highlight their own unique features rather than hiding them or changing them to fit repressive industry standards. She's even started a campaign, #breakingthestereotype, to inspire artists of all shapes, colors, and sizes to dance for themselves.
We caught up with this dancing maverick to get her advice on cultivating body confidence in a world that's obsessed with the "perfect" body.
In our "Dear Katie" series, former NYCB soloist Kathryn Morgan answers your pressing dance questions. Have something you want to ask Katie? Email firstname.lastname@example.org for a chance to be featured!
All the dancers in my level auditioned for a prestigious summer intensive—but I'm the only one who got in. Now everything is incredibly awkward at the studio. I'm really excited about the program, but I don't want to make my friends feel bad. What can I do?
Can't get enough of the dance party T. Swift throws herself in her "Delicate" music video? Take a look at the two making-of clips Taylor just shared on her Instagram, showing her practicing the vid's charmingly awkward choreography.