#1: Remembering all the choreography for your approximately 37 different routines. (Evolve Photo, courtesy New York City Dance Alliance)

10 Struggles All Competition Dancers Can Relate To

Dance competitions are where great memories are made. But—between the traveling, the challenging routines, and the bazillion costume changes—they're also the source of many, many #struggles. If you're a comp kid, you'll 100 percent be able to relate to these 10 problems.



Remembering All That Choreography

When you're in the contemporary, tap, and hip-hop group numbers, plus two duets and your solo, just getting all the steps to stay in your head can feel next to impossible.

Finding Literally Any Time for Homework

With your crazy comp schedule, trying to squeeze in schoolwork can be, um, challenging.

Keeping Track of Your Bazillion Costumes

TFW you swear you packed all 10 of your costumes, but it's competition day and oh dear lord, where is your solo dress??

Being Covered in Glitter Basically Forever

Glittery costumes. Glittery makeup. Glittery hairspray. SO. MUCH. GLITTER.

Not Being Able to Master Your Group Routine's Super-Complicated Hairstyle

I'm sorry—it's three French braids that are French-braided together into a crown braid? HALP.

Dealing with Awkward Friendship Rivalries

You love all your dance friends. You just don't want them to place higher than you. (JK, you know how to lose gracefully!)

Coming THIIIIIS CLOSE to Winning

Speaking of losing gracefully: Everyone on your team nailed their quadruple pirouettes and slayed their tilts—but you didn't clinch the title. Back to the rehearsal studio...

Handling 1,000 Quick Changes

Because having more than two minutes to change between pieces is a SERIOUS LUXURY.

Getting the Giggles During a Really Dramatic Piece

Yes, the dance is about a couple's terrible, gut-wrenching breakup—but your zipper just caught on your partner's shirt, and you're having a hard time keeping it together.

Going Back to School on Monday

Because despite the #strugz, comp weekends are the best, and we don't ever want them to end.

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All photos by Jayme Thornton. Wardrobe styling throughout by Chloë Chadá Van for The QUIRK Group.

Lizzo's Leading Ladies: Meet the Big Grrrls

Rising pop superstar Lizzo is changing the game in all kinds of ways. (A singer who also raps and plays the flute? You'd better believe it.) But she's become an especially important leader in the body-positivity revolution. And that emphasis on diversity and self-love extends to her fabulous group of backup dancers, known as The Big Grrrls.

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Because there's never been a better time to get your TikTok on. (Getty Images/TikTok)

7 of the Best TikTok Dance Challenges to Learn While Stuck at Home

Right now, a lot of us are social-distancing. Which is a good thing for the community. But for dancers, being at home—read: not in the studio—can be especially tough.

Enter TikTok. The app is blowing up right now, with everyone from Hailey Bieber to LeBron James to former Bachelorette (and "Dancing with the Stars" champ) Hannah Brown making accounts to stave off the stir-craziness.

To get you started on your TikTok journey, Dance Spirit rounded up seven of the best dances for you to learn. And when you're ready to share the fruits of your TikTok labors, be sure to tag us @dancespiritmagazine—we'll repost some of our faves!

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A Letter from the Editor in Chief

Hi, dance friends. It is a strange time to be a person in the world, and an especially strange time to be a dancer. As the dance community faces the coronavirus crisis, a lot of you are coping with closed studios, canceled performances and competitions, and a general sense of anxiety about how your world will look going forward.

Yes, dancers are super resilient, and there's been a lot of inspiring community-building happening. #LivingRoomDances and Instagram dance parties and virtual ballet classes with the pros are wonderful. Dance can, and should, be a bright spot in the darkness. But that weird, empty feeling you have? It might be grief. The loss of the certainty of daily class, the loss of the promise of that big end-of-year performance—that's real. The dance studio has always been a safe place; it's especially hard not to have that outlet now, when you need it most.

We're here for you. We—and our friends at Dance Magazine, Pointe, Dance Teacher, The Dance Edit, and Dance Business Weekly—are doing our best to document the hurdles facing the dance industry, and to advocate for dancers in need. We're developing more online content that will help you maintain and improve your technique while you're at home, and process the mental and emotional fallout of all this upheaval. (You can keep up with the latest stories here.) And we're still making our print magazine. We have issues planned and shot, full of great dance stories and beautiful photos. We're not going anywhere.

We want to hear from you. Talk to us. Or dance to us. Or both. We won't stop moving, and you shouldn't, either.

Margaret

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