Introducing Our May/June Cover Stars: Beyoncé's Backup Dancers!

It's always fun deciding who to feature on the cover of our annual Commercial Issue. There are so many incredible, spotlight-worthy dancers who deserve to be grooving alongside Hollywood's biggest names—and this month, we're so excited and so proud to show off eight of those dancers (plus two more on the DS digital edition!).

Do we even need to ask who runs the world?

Meet Beyoncé's backup dancers! These eight women (click here to read their story) and two men ("Les Twins"—read all about 'em!) just kicked off the superstar's The Mrs. Carter Show world tour, which will be making its way to the U.S. later this summer.

Naturally, pulling this shoot off wasn't easy. We somehow managed to get all 10 dancers, choreographer Frank Gatson Jr., two stylists, three hair and makeup artists, a publicist, a photographer, a photographer's assistant, a video crew and the DS staff together for five hours (on the Sunday morning of Daylight Savings Time—ouch!) at the Alvin Ailey studios in NYC...just days before the Beyoncé Camp began tech rehearsals for the tour. The shoot was completely crazy but totally worth it.

My .5 seconds of fame: being interviewed by the Beyoncé crew for her tour documentary. Gotta say, I prefer being on the other side of the camera!

Click here to see some of the best shots from the day.

Since the shoot and the magazine's release, Beyoncé and her team haven't taken a single day to rest or breathe. Here's a promo from the OMG-you-must-get-tickets tour:

And here's Beyoncé's latest commercial (featuring her lady dancers!) for H&M:

Finally, check out this killer video of all the dancers—and their fearless leader—dancing to "Grown Woman" in Paris:

What do you think of the new issue? Let us know!

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Photo by Brooke Fera

Enter the World of the Knicks City Dancers with 2 of Their Newest Rookies

Auditions rarely fail to deliver on suspense. But this? This was the nail-biter to end all nail-biters. Hayoung Roh and Chelsea McCloskey, both professional dancers based in NYC, had made it through what felt like endless rounds of cuts, both on Zoom and in person. Out of the nearly 500 dancers (from 30 states and nine countries) who'd answered the Knicks City Dancers' open call for video submissions, just 20 remained—McCloskey and Roh among them. "We were separated into six holding rooms, where we kept trying to figure out the math," Roh recalls. "How many girls are there in total? Who was called back?"

Finally, the women returned to the audition room to dance one last time—or so they were told. Instead, KCD head coach Alyssa Quezada dropped her bombshell: All 20 women had made the final cut. They would be 2021–22 Knicks City Dancers: the latest and greatest edition of one of the most prestigious NBA dance teams. "It was the biggest celebration and the coolest moment of my dance career so far," says McCloskey now. And that was just the oh-so-perfectly-dramatic beginning.

Chelsea McCloskey stands on her left leg while kicking her right leg up with her arms crossed, a smile on her face. She is auditioning for KCD. Chelsea McCloskey Photo by Tess Mayer


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