Ever wonder what it's really like to be in a ballet company? Go behind the scenes at Utah-based Ballet West this summer with "Breaking Pointe," a TV series documenting the passion and pain of professional dancers. We caught up with Ballet West artist Beckanne Sisk to find out about the filming process.
Dance Spirit: What was your reaction when you learned Ballet West would be participating in the show?
Beckanne Sisk: I was a bit nervous because I knew our lives would be out there for the whole world to see. Initially, I didn't want to be on camera--it made me really nervous. But once they started featuring and interviewing me, it was really cool and exciting.
DS: How did filming change your rehearsals and performances?
BS: We tried to forget the cameras were there. But they did motivate us--I made sure I was always wearing makeup! Contstantly having a camera on me made me really push myself. It's kind of quiet and unexciting now that they're gone.
DS: Give us three reasons why we should tune in.
BS: 1. Ballet isn't appreciated the way it should be because people don't understand it. The series will show how much we go through and how much we love it.
2. It's really entertaining--especially for dancers. They'll be able to relate first-hand to everything that happens.
3. Every little girl who's dreamed of becoming a ballerina will see there's so much more to being a ballet dancer than just performing beautifully and receiving praise.
We're convinced! The show premieres May 31. Can't wait? Watch the "Breaking Pointe" trailer here.
Ballet West artist Beckanne Sisk as Kitri in the 2011 production of Anna Marie Holmes' Don Quixote. Photo by Luke Isley.
(From left) Darriel Johnakin, Diego Pasillas, and Emma Sutherland (all photos by Erin Baiano)
Dance Spirit's 2019 Cover Model Search finalists: Darriel Johnakin, Diego Pasillas, and Emma Sutherland! One of them will win a spot on Dance Spirit's Fall 2019 cover. Learn more about the dancers by clicking on their names here:
vote for your favorite below. You can vote once a day now through July 15.
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When it comes to injury-prone body parts, knees reign supreme for dancers. But a little strengthening can go a long way in preventing painful outcomes. We turned to Dirk Hartog, a physical therapist with Westside Dance Physical Therapy in NYC, for three exercises that'll support and stabilize your knees.
James Whiteside (Jayme Thornton for Dance Magazine)
Say you're perpetually impeccable designer Thom Browne. Say you're planning your Spring 2020 Paris menswear show along a "Versailles country club" theme. Say you want a world-class danseur to open the show with some kind of appropriately fabulous choreography.
Who do you call? James Whiteside, of course. On Saturday, the American Ballet Theatre principal—wearing pointe shoes and a glorious pinstriped tutu—kicked off Browne's presentation at the École des Beaux-Arts with a 15-minute, show-stealing solo. Whiteside choreographed the piece himself, with the help of detailed notes from the designer.