This Blood Orange Music Video Is a Love Letter to Maria Kochetkova

Cool kids everywhere are obsessed with hugely talented singer/songwriter Dev Hynes, aka Blood Orange. Cool kids everywhere are also obsessed with world-class ballerina and all-around superhero Maria Kochetkova. What happens when you put these two artists in a ballet studio together? Magic of the highest, coolest order.

Magic also known as the music video for Blood Orange's "I Know," which features Hynes and Kochetkova in an elegantly playful dance-off. We see Hynes partnering Kochetkova; we see Kochetkova following Hynes' movement cues, and Hynes following Kochetkova's; we see the two of them laughing at his attempts to replicate her virtuosity. He's so obviously in awe of her talent, and she's so clearly respectful of his.

The whole thing is refreshingly spare—just the two of them, the empty studio, and the workings of their formidable imaginations. And the song is fantastic, which definitely doesn't hurt.

Happy Friday, y'all:

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Auditions rarely fail to deliver on suspense. But this? This was the nail-biter to end all nail-biters. Hayoung Roh and Chelsea McCloskey, both professional dancers based in NYC, had made it through what felt like endless rounds of cuts, both on Zoom and in person. Out of the nearly 500 dancers (from 30 states and nine countries) who'd answered the Knicks City Dancers' open call for video submissions, just 20 remained—McCloskey and Roh among them. "We were separated into six holding rooms, where we kept trying to figure out the math," Roh recalls. "How many girls are there in total? Who was called back?"

Finally, the women returned to the audition room to dance one last time—or so they were told. Instead, KCD head coach Alyssa Quezada dropped her bombshell: All 20 women had made the final cut. They would be 2021–22 Knicks City Dancers: the latest and greatest edition of one of the most prestigious NBA dance teams. "It was the biggest celebration and the coolest moment of my dance career so far," says McCloskey now. And that was just the oh-so-perfectly-dramatic beginning.

Chelsea McCloskey stands on her left leg while kicking her right leg up with her arms crossed, a smile on her face. She is auditioning for KCD. Chelsea McCloskey Photo by Tess Mayer


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