Congratulations, Amanda! The 2008 Cover Model Search Winner

The weird looks started at Amanda Viereck’s local CVS. The Cover Model Search finalist was shopping with her mom after the July/August issue of DS hit the stands. As they walked down an aisle, three teenage girls stopped to stare. Amanda worried—was there something on her face? When the girls were gone, her mom reenacted their whispered conversation:


“Is that her?”
“I don’t know.”
“I think so!”


This was the first time—but certainly not the last—Amanda realized that people she didn’t know were recognizing her. Though the incident made her feel a bit strange, she also felt proud. She remembers thinking, “Yup—that’s me!” Indeed, she was one of the chosen three.


Soon, others caught on. The Gloucester County Times, a newspaper in New Jersey, published an article about Amanda. They took pictures of her tap dancing on her high school’s stage and encouraged readers to vote for her on Terrence “Taps,” a tap teacher and choreographer in Atlanta, GA, with a blog about tap dance, also wrote about Amanda, rallying the tap community to support her.


And they did. Even random people at restaurants addressed Amanda as the girl they had voted for.


Amanda went to Nationals with a confidence boost. She felt good knowing how excited people were about the CMS and how much they wanted to help her.


“Before this, I used to psych myself out. I’d worry if I was going to make all of my turns,” Amanda says about performing at competitions. “Now it’s easier for me—I feel more relaxed.”


Still, Amanda had more challenges to face. Although she auditioned and got accepted to Tap City’s weeklong summer Pre-Professional Program, her chronic illness, Behçets, got in her way.


From February through spring, Amanda struggled. She was bedridden for days at a time on a few separate occasions with bad headaches, dizziness, blurry vision and extreme fatigue. She was able to attend some of her scheduled competitions, but she had to miss out on Tap City. Though she was disappointed, she didn’t want to jeopardize her health, and she plans to audition again next year!


Currently a high school senior, she’s thinking ahead. She hopes to go to college near the NYC area, but hasn’t found the right school with the right tap program yet. And she hopes to use her DS CMS win to help her book modeling gigs for both clothing and dancewear companies (at 5 feet, she never thought this was possible!).


Mostly, Amanda thinks winning the CMS will inspire more people to take an interest in and express themselves through tap. She’ll also encourage other dancers with illnesses to keep fighting and continue dancing.


“Winning the cover means my struggles are worth something,” Amanda says. “It proves to me that I can overcome Behçets and any other obstacles that come my way.”

Latest Posts

Protocol like mandatory face masks, temperature checks, and careful class staging have become the norm at comps and conventions like NYCDA (Evolve Photo & Video, courtesy NYCDA)

4 Industry Leaders Walk Us Through the State of the Competition/ Convention World

After a year of tumult, virtual events and constantly moving targets, it's more than reasonable to wonder: What exactly is the state of the competition world?

For months, we didn't see our favorite friends and teachers unless it was through a screen—now, against all odds, programs are rising from the ashes to bring you meaningful training and performance opportunities both in person and online. We asked four prominent competition/convention directors to give you the inside scoop on what to expect from this season (and, yes, that includes Nationals).

Keep Reading SHOW LESS
Photo by Matthew Karas/MOVE|NYC|

Blu Furutate is Your March Cover Model Search Editors' Choice Winner

Congratulations to the March Cover Model Search Editors' Choice video winner, Blu Furutate! Watch her solo below, and be sure to enter the Cover Model Search here.

Keep Reading SHOW LESS
Students at NYU Tisch School of the Arts (Clara Reed, courtesy NYU Tisch School of the Arts)

How College Seniors Can Make the Best of Graduating During a Pandemic

If you're a college student, there are some guarantees. The dining hall food will be bad. Your communal shower will be gross. You will sleep through class (at least) once. And at the end of it all, you will walk across a stage and move the tassel on your hat and—finally!—graduate.

But not even college traditions are immune to the impacts of the coronavirus pandemic. Because while dining hall food may remain terrible, communal bathrooms disgusting and alarm clocks just a little too quiet, graduating in the midst of a global pandemic will be different.

And that's not just because, at many schools, COVID protocols will require that your graduation be held virtually. Dancers today are graduating into a different job market—one plagued by company closures, performance cancellations, and significant challenges facing the arts industry as a whole.

We know, we know. It sounds pretty bleak. But with vaccination rates rising and live performances slowly returning to stages, there is a light at the end of the pandemic tunnel. And to make sure you're ready for graduation (even in a time that nobody could have prepared for), we spoke with faculty at two top dance schools about what students can do differently this year to prep for life postgrad.

Keep Reading SHOW LESS

Editors' Picks

Enter the Cover Model Search