Future Star winner Aislin Mitchell (photo by King Shots, courtesy Mitchell)

Meet Round 1 of This Year's Future Star Award Winners

Dance Spirit is beyond excited to announce the first round of 2018 Future Star winners! Every year, DS partners with competitions to recognize dancers with exceptional presence and ability. The second round of winners will be featured in our January issue, so stay tuned.

Nick Alvino

Photo by DRC/Dancebug, courtesy Alvino

Age 17

Alexa's Dance Academy, East Meadow, NY

Turn It Up Dance Challenge, Ocean City, MD

Veronica Wilson

Photo by 4Star Productions, courtesy Wilson

Age 16

The Dance Connection, East Haven, CT

Spirit of Dance Awards, Hershey, PA

Julie Joyner

Photo by Platoon, courtesy of Joyner

Age 13

Dance Arts Centre, Suwanee, GA

Believe National Talent Competition, Fort Lauderdale, FL

Sara Verdi

Photo by Amy Nicole, courtesy Verdi

Age 16

K-Force Dance Academy, Manassas, VA

Starpower National Talent Competition, Atlantic City, NJ

Ciara Crough-Taylor

Photo by John Baud Photography, courtesy Crough-Taylor

Age 10

Dancers Burlington, Burlington, ON, Canada

Power Pak Dance Tour, Sandusky, OH

Erin Nipps

Courtesy Groove Dance Competition

Age 17

Jamie's Dance Odyssey, Deptford, NJ

Groove Dance Competition, Atlantic City, NJ

Jackie Hovis

Photo by Katie Goughan, courtesy Hovis

Age 17

Elite Dance By Damian, Warrendale, PA

Starpower National Talent Competition, Myrtle Beach, SC

Ava Sefcheck

Photo by Shutterstorm, courtesy Sefcheck

Age 10

Houck Dance Studio, Uniontown, PA

West Coast Dance Explosion, Orlando, FL

Gianna Newborg

Photo by Dance Bug, courtesy Newborg

Age 18

CaRu Entertainment Dance Complex, Pennington, NJ

Turn It Up Dance Challenge, Long Branch, NJ

Sofia Morales

Age 8

White Bear Dance Center, White Bear Lake, MN

Celebration Talent, Duluth, MN

Giuliana Justincic

Courtesy Starpower National Talent Competition

Age 12

North East Dance Academy, Commack, NY

Starpower National Talent Competition, Uncasville, CT

Jenna Jarboe

Photo by Universal Event Photography, courtesy Jarboe

Age 10

Expressenz Dance Center, Indianapolis, IN

Starpower National Talent Competition, Orlando, FL

Angel Davis

Photo courtesy Stephanie Berry, courtesy Davis

Age 16

New Castle Dance and Music Academy, Newark, DE

Imagine National Dance Challenge, Hershey, PA

Eve Juliani

Photo by David Hofmann, courtesy Juliani

Age 18

Underground Dance Company, Macomb, MI

Believe National Talent Competition, Ocean City, MD

Anaya Rae Stickel

Photo by Starpower Photography, courtesy Stickel

Age 6

The Next Jennaration, Lansing, NY

Starpower National Talent Competition, Ocean City, MD

Cole Channing LaFont

Photo by Universal Event Photography, courtesy Lafont

Age 15

Gerald Dishman's Academy of Dance, Houma, LA

Imagine Dance Challenge, New Orleans, LA

Samantha Behrens

Photo by Robert Ostry, courtesy Behrens

Age 18

Broadway Dance Theatre, North Plainfield, NJ

Power Pak Dance Tour, Orlando, FL

Trinity Baker

Courtesy Hall of Fame Dance Competition

Age 13

Starstruck Performing Arts Center, Lenexa, KS

Starpower National Talent Competition, Branson, MO

Giovana Reparto

Photo by Universal Event Photography, courtesy Reparto

Age 11

L.A. Dance NY, Staten Island, NY

Starpower National Talent Competition, Atlantic City, NJ

Randi Martinez

Photo by Lifetouch Photography, courtesy Martinez

Age 15

The Studance LAB, Avondale, AZ

Step Up 2 Dance, Phoenix, AZ

Sarah Subach

Photo by Team Creative, courtesy Subach

Age 14

Inner Prestige Dance, Itasca, IL

Starbound National Talent Competition, Chicago, IL

Maddie Garza

Courtesy Radix Dance Convention

Age 18

Dolce Dance Studio, Fresno, CA

Starpower National Talent Competition, Uncasville, CT

Kathleen Kerrins

Photo by DRC/Dancebug, courtesy Kerrins

Age 17

Step Ahead School of Dance, Rehoboth, MA

Turn It Up Dance Challenge, Cape Cod, MA

Natalie Mattson

Photo by Shutterstorm Media, courtesy Mattson

Age 18

Epic Dance Studio, Edmond, OK

Encore Performing Arts, Las Vegas, NV

Reagan Sheppeard

Photo by Kim Garcia, courtesy Sheppeard

Age 16

A Step Ahead Performance Academy, Yuma, AZ

LA Dance Magic, Anaheim, CA

Mallary Quaderer

Photo by Ashley Lodge Photography, courtesy Quaderer

Age 17

Elizabeth Williams School of Dance, Sevierville, TN

Celebration Talent, Orlando, FL

JR Valenti

Photo by Joe Duarte, courtesy Valenti

Age 12

Mia Bella Academy of Dance, Palm Coast, FL

Artists Simply Human, Orlando, FL

Ella D'Angelo

Photo by Jared Vollmann, courtesy Groove Dance Competition

Age 14

CSOD's Dance Empire, Spring Hill, FL

Groove Dance Competition, Myrtle Beach, SC

Emily Wagner

Photo by Bradley Schluter, courtesy Wagner

Age 9

Special Touch Talent Dance, Kettering, OH

Stage One National Dance Competition, Gatlinburg, TN

Christina DiStaso

Photo by Midcoast Photo, courtesy Distaso

Age 16

Strauss Performing Arts, Edison, NJ

Step Up 2 Dance, Atlantic City, NJ

Jacalyn LaLond

Courtesy Step Up 2 Dance

Age 18

Fontaine Academy of Dance, Duxbury, MA

Step Up 2 Dance, Manchester, NH

Aislin Mitchell

Photo by King Shots, courtesy Mitchell

Age 12

Dancensations Dance Center, Alexandria, VA

StarQuest, Virginia Beach, VA

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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.


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