This Prima Cat Is Ready for Her Debut

The comparisons between dancers and cats are obvious and many: preternatural grace, laser focus, the desire to curl up in patches of sunlight, high-strung yet lovable personalities...etc.

So it comes as no surprise that this cat is ready for her big moment. Observe how naturally she displays the qualities required to dance many of the most coveted roles in the ballet cannon! Marvel at her amazing versatility! She won't allow herself to be type-cast as the White Cat in The Sleeping Beauty.

She demonstrates the pathos and emotional maturity necessary to the dance classical queen-maker, The Dying Swan. The unique way she relates to the death of a bird is truly extraordinary.

(Left to right: Cat, photo by @ccchisa76; Svetlana Zakharova, photo by Jack Devant)

She unfurls her limbs into infinity, poised to become contemporary choreographer David Dawson's latest muse. With seemingly limitless flexibility in her spine, she's raising the bar for the next generation of ballerinas.

(From left to right: Dawson's Day4, photo by Angela Sterling; Cat, photo by @ccchisa76; Dawson's Giselle, photo by Ian Whalen)

Her impeccable sense of timing and spatial awareness give her an advantage in George Balanchine's neoclassical works, like the lush Serenade. "People call me 'Dark Angel,' or some variation of that, all the time," she says, laughing. "So the role is a natural fit."

(From left to right: Cat, photo by @ccchisa76; Students at the School of American Ballet Workshop, photo by Paul Kolnik)

Romeo and Juliet presents more than just a technical challenge—it demands a dance-actress of the highest caliber. But she's up for it. Switching rapidly among dramatic emotional states is practically second nature. And just look at that épaulement!

(From left to right: Cat, photo by @ccchisa76; National Ballet of Canada in Romeo and Juliet, photo by Bruce Zinger)

Her jump is simply incredible! Bounding six times her body length is a breeze, turning bravura solos in ballets like Le Corsaire (traditionally performed by male humans) into kitten's play.

(From left to right: Cat, photo by @ccchisa76; Ivan Vasiliev, photo by Andrea Mohin/NYT)

Of course a ballet career isn't for everyone, and should this kitty decide she wants to cut loose and try something new, she'll have options. She can always join Suga N Spice crew. Just look at that whip!

(From left to right: Still from Suga N Spice crew in "Watch Me Whip"; Cat, photo by @ccchisa76)

Want more Dance Spirit?

Latest Posts

Trans dancer, choreographer, and activist Sean Dorsey in his work Boys in Trouble (Keegan Marling, courtesy Sean Dorsey Dance)

8 Phenomenal Trans and GNC Dancers to Follow

Whether through color-specific costumes, classes separated by sex, or the "traditional" view of the roles boys and girls should play in ballet, most dance students are taught that their gender determines their role in the studio beginning in elementary school. And, especially for those struggling with their own gender identity, that can cause harm and confusion. "From a very young age, I did not see myself reflected anywhere in the modern dance field," says trans dancer, choreographer, and activist Sean Dorsey. "There was a really intense message I received, which was that my body and identity don't have a place here."

Despite significant societal progress in regards to gender representation, the dance world has trailed behind, and many transgender and gender nonconforming teenagers still feel lost within the world of dance. Prominent trans and GNC professional dancers are few and far between. "Being a Black trans woman means I have to work extra, extra, extra hard, because I have to set the tone for the people who come after me," says Brielle "Tatianna" Rheames, a distinguished voguer.

But the rise of social platforms has given Rheames, Dorsey, and other trans and GNC dancers a path to visibility—and that visibility helps create community and change lives. "Social media plays an extremely big part," Rheames says. "You can't just hide us anymore." Here are eight incredible trans and GNC dancers to add to your own Instagram feed.

Keep Reading SHOW LESS
Project 21 dancers (from left) Selena Hamilton, Gracyn French, and Dyllan Blackburn (Photo by Quinn Wharton; hair and makeup throughout by Angela Huff for Mark Edward Inc.)

How Project 21 Is Shaping the Next Generation of Competition-Dance Standouts

"I wish I had a better story about the name," says Molly Long, founder of the Orange County, CA–based dance studio Project 21. In truth, it's a play on the fact that she was born on the twenty-first of August, and 21 is her favorite number. "I was away on a teaching tour, the audition announcement was going live on Instagram the next day, and I desperately needed a name. Project 21 was just the least cheesy of the options I thought of!"

The fact that fans might expect the name to have some profound meaning speaks to the near-mythic status Project 21 has achieved on the competition and convention scene since its founding in 2014. Long's dancers are all wholly individual, yet jell seamlessly as a group, and are consistently snagging top prizes everywhere on the circuit. Each season brings a slew of new accolades, high-caliber faculty, and legions of devoted followers.

The industry has taken notice of the studio's unique ethos. "Molly gets through to her dancers in a special way, and they have this incomparable level of commitment to their craft as a result," says dancer and choreographer Billy Bell, who's worked closely with Long and her dancers. "That's what sets them apart—it's like a little dose of magic."

Keep Reading SHOW LESS

Editors' Picks

Enter the Cover Model Search