Okay, so like most of you, I spent my holidays doing absolutely nothing. I mean, I slept a lot, I ate a lot, I read a lot, and I played with my parents' cats and watched Christmas movies... but as far as physical exercise, I have to admit that I went jogging once and that's it. For someone who is pretty active on a regular basis, it was both exhilarating and kind of mortifying.Â
And then I came back and tried to rejoin my dance routine. And the soreness... oh, the pain! You know what I'm talking about: That first class, you feel amazing, like you can do anything, from multiple pirouettes to sky-high extensions. But the next few classes, your body won't do a thing you ask it to. I had to back off, take it a little easier and give myself a chance to reacclimate to the studio.Â
It was a good reminder, and something I think can't be stressed enough! (I know we've said it in the pages of DS before...) Give yourself a break from time to time. A real break. A not-dancing-at-all week. And then, don't get too carried away when you go back. Don't start in January (or in the fall, or even the start of a summer program) by knocking yourself out with extra classes to get back in shape quicker. You'll just end up in the bathtub with ibuprofin, trying to convince your hamstrings that you really do have to touch your toes.Â
I'm starting to get back in the groove, and I'm sure you are too at this point--prepping for regionals and spring shows and who knows what else! So just take this as a gentle reminder to be kind to your bod! You need it.Â
(From left) Darriel Johnakin, Diego Pasillas, and Emma Sutherland (all photos by Erin Baiano)
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 on their profile pages, and then vote for your favorite below. You can vote once a day now through July 15.
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Imagine attending American Ballet Theatre's prestigious NYC summer intensive, training among classical ballet legends. Imagine taking the stage at New York City Dance Alliance Nationals, competing against some of the country's best contemporary dancers. Now, imagine doing both—at the same time.
Welcome to Madison Brown's world. This summer, she's in her third year as a National Training Scholar with ABT, while also competing for NYCDA's Teen Outstanding Dancer title. (She's already won Outstanding Dancer in the Mini and Junior categories.) The logistics are complicated—ABT's five-week intensive overlaps with the weeklong NYCDA Nationals, which translates to a lot of cabs back and forth across Manhattan—but Maddie is committed to making the most of each opportunity. "I love contemporary and ballet equally," she says. "While I'm able to do both, I want to do as much as I can."
Maddie has an expressive face, endless extensions, and a quiet command of the stage. She dances with remarkable maturity—a trait noted by none other than Jennifer Lopez, one of the judges on NBC's "World of Dance," on which Maddie competed in Season 2. Although Maddie didn't take home the show's top prize, she was proud to be the youngest remaining soloist when she was eliminated, and saw the whole experience as an opportunity to grow. After all, she's just getting started. Oh, that's right—did we mention Maddie's only 14?
Corbin Bleu in rehearsal for "Kiss Me, Kate" (Jenny Anderson, courtesy Roundabout Theatre Company)
If you're a hardcore Broadway baby, today is the worst Sunday of the year. Why, you ask? The Tony Awards were last Sunday, so basically there's nothing to look forward to in life anymore—no James Corden being James Corden, no teary acceptance speeches from newly minted stars, no thrilling excerpts from the hottest new shows. Oh yeah, and there are 50 more Sundays to go before our humdrum lives are once again blessed with the next annual iteration of Broadway's biggest night.