Congrats to Joffrey's Choreographers of Color Award-Winners!

Eeeeeeee!

That's the sound we make when we hear about events showcasing emerging choreographers. Maybe that's oddly specific, but think about it: Whatever directions these artists decide to take will help shape the coming decades of dance. Call us #dancenerdz, but we think that's pretty freakin' exciting.

This July, the Joffrey Academy of Dance held a national competition in search of up-and-coming choreographers of color, and last week they selected the winners: Jennifer Archibald, Abdul Latif and Stephanie Martinez. Let's take a moment to meet these dance-future-holders.

Jennifer Archibald is the founder and artistic director of the Arch Dance Company. Her style combines elements of hip hop and contemporary to create movement that's intensely physical, emotional and spiritual. To get a better sense of what this looks like, check out an excerpt from Archibald's Wings, performed by Ailey II:

Abdul Latif is the founder/artistic director of the performing arts firm D2DT. His choreography is urban contemporary, combining his diverse background of technical training with the urban experience. Check out Latif's There Are No Tangents: Part 1 – Where Have You Been?

Last, but certainly not least, Stephanie Martinez is a Chicago-based dance maker. Her choreography layers elements from all different styles on top of a strong balletic base. Here's Martinez's Orange Bird:

All three choreographers will present world premieres—set on Joffrey Academy trainees and the Joffrey Studio Company—in "Winning Works 2015." The event will hold three performances from March 7–8 at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago. (Click here for tickets.) We can't wait to see what these three come up with!

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.'"

Keep Reading SHOW LESS
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.

Keep Reading SHOW LESS
Photo courtesy of Brittany Conigatti

Go Behind the Scenes of Annie Live! With Brittany Conigatti

Unwrap your candy canes, pour the hot chocolate and round up your fellow theater lovers: NBC is kicking off the Christmas season with its latest live-broadcast TV musical. Annie Live! premieres December 2 and features a star-studded cast, including Harry Connick Jr., Tituss Burgess, Megan Hilty and, as the title character, young phenom Celina Smith.

Luckily, people got a taste of what the special will entail when the cast kicked off the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade with a performance last week. But since you’re never fully dressed without a Dance Spirit exclusive, we caught up with Brittany Conigatti, one of the young orphans and adult ensemble members in the show, to learn what it was like putting together a large-scale live production for the small screen.

The cast of Annie Live! poses for a group photo. The cast of Annie Live!Photo courtesy of Conigatti


Keep Reading SHOW LESS

Editors' Picks

contest
Enter the Cover Model Search