April 2016


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  • Dear Katie

    Dear Katie, I love performing, but I dread class and rehearsals. They’re so boring! How can I find my ... More »

  • Choreographer’s Collage: Michelle Dorrance

    Since founding her company, NYC-based Dorrance Dance, in 2011, Michelle Dorrance has won one major award after another, starting ... More »

  • Ditch the Dirty Dancewear

    After an especially long workout or grueling rehearsal, there’s a good chance your energy’s completely drained. And with errands ... More »

  • Help! My Mom’s My Teacher!

    Is the person leading technique class also—gulp—your mother? Here’s the good news: Having a parent as a dance teacher ... More »

  • How To Talk To Your Doctor

    Podiatrist Thomas Novella remembers one of his first interactions with dancer feet. Fresh out of podiatry school, he saw ... More »

  • Pom 101

    When it comes to dance team, you know you’ve got the “dance” part of the equation down cold. But ... More »

  • The Network

    College is all about investing in your education, but it’s also the perfect time to meet a ton of ... More »

  • You Should Know: Phoenix Lil’Mini

    Hip-hop phenomenon Phoenix Lil’Mini is a girl on fire, with ultra-precise animation skills and larger-than-life stage presence. So it’s ... More »

  • Letter to My Teenage Self: Michele Wiles

    Former American Ballet Theatre principal Michele Wiles, a picture-perfect ballerina, has had a career packed with accolades and critical ... More »

  • Up Front: The Dirt with Jacqueline Green

    Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater’s Jacqueline Green is a classically elegant dancer who moves with a deep soulfulness—and her ... More »

  • Destined for the Spotlight

    When 20-year-old Austin Joson and 19-year-old Nino Dzneladze dance, they’re completely, intensely connected. Whether they’re doing a sharp, energetic ... More »

  • Be the Ultimate Understudy

    Boston Ballet’s Lauren Herfindahl is a dance-world rarity: an artist who actually likes understudying, a task most dancers see ... More »

  • Tricked Out

    It’s the ultimate groan-inducing moment: A dancer’s graceful contemporary piece is going off without a hitch—her technique is flawless, ... More »

  • We Go Together…

    We’ve all gaped at those YouTube clips of dancers executing fiendish fouetté sequences, complete with doubles, triples and spot-changes, ... More »

  • Rally Ready

    Check out these rehearsal looks to help you stand out while staying uniform during color-themed dance team practices!   Related

Latest Posts


Photo by Jayme Thornton

How Paloma Garcia-Lee Manifested Her Dream Role, in Steven Spielberg’s "West Side Story"

On a rainy day in November 2018, Paloma Garcia-Lee got a call from her agent that brought her to her knees outside her New York City apartment: She was going to play Graziella in Steven Spielberg's West Side Story.

The call came after a lengthy audition process with Spielberg in the room, and the role, originated by Wilma Curley on Broadway in 1957 and later portrayed by Gina Trikonis in the 1961 film, was her biggest dream. In fact, it's something Garcia-Lee says she manifested from the day plans for the movie were announced in January 2018. "I wrote in my journal: 'I am playing Graziella in Steven Spielberg's West Side Story.'"

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Photo by @mediabyZ

Am I Less Committed to Dance Because I Have Other Passions? (Spoiler Alert: NO!)

Let's face it—dance is HARD, and in order to achieve your goals, you need to be committed to your training. "Still, there's a fine line between being committed and being consumed." Dancers can, and should, have interests outside of the studio.

Not convinced? We talked with dance psychologist Dr. Lucie Clements and two multifaceted dancers, Kristen Harlow (a musical theater dancer pursuing a career in NYC and Kentucky) and Kallie Takahashi (a dancer in her final year at New York University's Tisch School of the Arts), and got the inside scoop on how having hobbies outside of dance can inform your artistry, expand your range and help prevent burnout.

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Photo by Jamayla Burse

Catching Up With Christian Burse, Comp Kid Turned Complexions Rising Star

With her nearly limitless facility, well-timed dynamics and incredible control, Christian Burse's future as a dancer was guaranteed to be bright. A student at the renowned Booker T. Washington High School for the Performing and Visual Arts in Dallas, TX, and at Dance Industry Performing Arts Center in Plano, TX, Burse has consistently made waves: She won first runner-up for Teen Outstanding Dancer at New York City Dance Alliance Nationals in 2019, received a grant for summer study at Juilliard from the Texas Young Masters program in 2020, and was named a YoungArts finalist for dance in 2021.

So, it wasn't all that surprising when Burse announced that, at just 17 years old, she would be joining Complexions Contemporary Ballet as an apprentice for the company's 2021–22 season.

Dance Spirit caught up with Burse to hear all about her first season with Complexions ahead of the contemporary ballet company's run at the Joyce Theater in NYC this month.

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