Choreographer's Collage

Mandy Moore’s star just keeps rising. She’s best known as a choreographer and judge on “So You Think You Can Dance,” but she also takes her unique style to students around the country, teaching at the JUMP convention and L.A.’s Edge Performing Arts Center. Dancers and audiences alike can’t get enough of her playful, intricate, fluid style! Whether she’s creating rocking eighties jazz pieces or bringing tears to our eyes with narrative contemporary numbers, this is one choreographer we love. Read on to find out what inspires Mandy to create her phenomenal pieces.

Jillian Meyers, freelance dancer and teacher with Monsters of Hip Hop: “Jillian dances in such a way that it makes me want to create more movement to keep her moving.”

Jiří Kylián's “Black and White“ series: “Before seeing the 'Black and White’ ballets, I never knew partnering like that existed. I realized they were partnering the way I move as an individual: I like to go through space and get crazy to see what kind of shapes I can create, and they were doing it with two people! I knew then I wanted to learn how to do that.”

Skydiving: “I love skydiving! Flying is always an inspiration.”

Mia Michaels’ Hometown Glory on Season 4 of

“So You Think You Can Dance”: “I loved Hometown Glory and the way Mia was able to pull emotion out of the dancers’ bodies. It wasn’t about a prop or a crazy concept, but beautiful dancing that created an amazing feeling.

The Company of "Wicked." Photo by Joan Marcus

Wicked: “I am a closet Broadway person. Wicked rejuvenated my love of Broadway with all its bells, whistles and fun stuff onstage.”

Dancers: “I am always inspired by the dancers in front of me. I was especially moved by the dancers I worked with on Celine Dion’s Taking Chances tour.”

Staying Alive: “My piece Sweet Dreams was inspired by Staying Alive, my favorite movie of all time. I think I was born in the wrong decade: I was supposed to be in that 1970s movie doing those moves. Sweet Dreams was my shout-out to hard, amazing, hot jazz.”

Dancer to Dancer
(From left) Darriel Johnakin, Diego Pasillas, and Emma Sutherland (all photos by Erin Baiano)

Congratulations to 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:

Read Darriel's profile here

Read Diego's profile here

Read Emma's profile here

And then vote for your favorite below. You can vote once a day now through July 15.

We also want you to get social! We'll be factoring social media likes and shares into our final tallies. Be sure to show your favorite finalist some love on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, sharing their profile pages and using the hashtag #DanceSpiritCMS.

Cover Model Search
Photo by Erin Baiano

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.

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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.

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