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Boston Conservatory at Berklee dance alum Ebony Williams performs in Berklee's 2017 Beyoncé Ensemble concert. Kelly Davidson, Courtesy Boston Conservatory at Berklee

6 Reasons Why Boston Conservatory at Berklee Is a Destination for Commercial Training

Boston Conservatory has long been a leader in contemporary dance training in higher ed. While it remains an excellent option for artists hoping to pursue a career in concert dance, now—with the launch of a brand-new BFA program—the institution is expanding its world-class conservatory-style training to encompass commercial dance. Now accepting applications for fall 2022 studies, the commercial dance BFA will build on Boston Conservatory at Berklee's standard of excellence to prepare the next generation of dance professionals for the commercial industry. If you dream of dancing backup for Beyoncé, travelling the world as an entertainer on a cruise ship or landing a role in the next Cirque du Soleil production, here are six reasons to consider this standout program.

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Photo courtesy of Spotlight Dance Academy of NJ

Better Together: Self-Choreographing Your Duet or Group Dance

It's no surprise that more and more dancers are choosing to choreograph their own solos for competitions: It grants them creative freedom, gives them a chance to practice choreography, and allows them to find what movement works best for them.

But what about dancers who want to choreograph a duet, trio or even a group dance with their peers? Does it become a case of too many cooks in the kitchen, or an opportunity for collaboration and growth?

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Kaveh Kowsari, Coutesy Lauryn Hayes

Diversify Your Training and Open New Doors at Marymount Manhattan College

No two dancers' career paths are exactly alike...which is actually pretty great! Equally great: New kinds of opportunities are constantly cropping up in the dance world, along with new skills necessary to book them. (Did anyone really know how to make a self-tape before 2020?) But in an industry that seems to quick-change faster than you did at your last recital, how can you be certain which skills will be the most important for you to have on your unique dance journey? The short answer: You can't. Luckily, though, with the right foundation, you can feel confident in any environment, whatever road you dance down.

Enter Marymount Manhattan College, a liberal arts school in the heart of NYC. From Broadway to ballet to the big screen, if you can dream of doing it, Marymount's BA and BFA dance programs provide the tool kit you'll need to get there.

Dance Spirit caught up with four Marymount Manhattan alumni to hear how the diversity of their training has helped them navigate postgrad life.

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Get Fueled With These Delicious Oatmeal Recipes for Dancers

Oatmeal isn't just a boring breakfast anymore—it's a hearty meal (or snack) that's perfect for a pre- or post-dance refuel!

Oatmeal is affordable and customizable, making it perfect for dancers looking for a budget-friendly, pre-rehearsal pick-me-up. A half-cup of uncooked old-fashioned oats offers 4 grams of fiber and 5 grams of protein, and that's before you dress it up with your favorite toppings.

Here are three methods for cooking old-fashioned oats, plus four ways to customize them.

COOKING YOUR OATMEAL

Stovetop

Bring 1/2 cup water, 1/2 cup of your preferred milk and a pinch of salt to a boil in a small saucepan. Add 1/2 cup of oats and reduce to medium heat. Stir occasionally and cook until the oats have absorbed most of the liquid, about 5 minutes. Top with your favorite combinations from the list below.

Overnight

Mix 1/2 cup of dried oats, 1/2 cup of your preferred milk or yogurt, and 1 teaspoon of chia seeds in a jar or airtight container. Leave in your refrigerator overnight, or for a least five hours. Mix with ingredients from the list below.

Baked

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Mix or blend 1/2 cup of dried oats with 1/2 cup of your preferred milk, 1/2 teaspoon baking powder, a pinch of salt, 1/2 of a mashed banana, and your preferred ingredients from the list below. Pour batter into an 8-ounce greased ramekin. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.

ADDING YOUR TOPPINGS

Berries and Cream

Serve with sliced strawberries, blueberries, a dash of vanilla extract and a dollop of yogurt.

Pumpkin Spice

Top with a scoop of pumpkin purée, cinnamon, nutmeg and a drizzle of maple syrup.

Apple Cinnamon

Dice apples into bite-size pieces and top with cinnamon and maple syrup or honey.

Peanut Butter Chocolate

Bring extra protein with a small scoop of peanut butter or other nut butter, and add chocolate chips for sweetness.

Photo courtesy of Red Bull

Meet the Dancer Who Went From The Ailey School to Winning Hip-Hop Championships

Angyil's list of battle wins is so long, you'd be forgiven for assuming she's been a hip hopper her whole life. But back when she was a tiny dancer, Angyil actually started out with ballet classes in Kansas City, Missouri. Read on to find out how she transformed into a three-time world champion freestyler and "World of Dance" alumna—and catch her in Washington, DC, October 22, where she'll be competing in the Red Bull Dance Your Style National Pre-Finals, and, if she wins, in the Finals on October 23.

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