New York City Ballet Dancers "Prepare for Takeoff"

Last fall, Cole Haan and three New York City Ballet dancers—Megan Fairchild, Sara Mearns and Gretchen Smith—collaborated on a line of the most ballerina of ballet flats. We loved the results: adorable shoes and beautiful campaign pictures. What's better than seeing some of our favorite ballerinas jump around in big, glossy advertisements?

(From left) Gretchen Smith, Sara Mearns and Megan Fairchild modeling their ballet flat designs (Photo via Cole Haan)

Good news because not only are they keeping the collaboration going, but they've taken it to an entirely new level: "Prepare for Takeoff" guys! The campaign, which is promoting Cole Haan's ZerøGrand collection, once again features Fairchild, Mearns and Smith, but with an added twist–the trio is joined by two professional Parkour athletes, Jason Chu and Devon Spence.

The unstoppable "Prepare for Takeoff" group (Photo by Sebastian Kim for Cole Haan)

The whole thing was shot at the TWA Flight Center in Queens, NY, and Cole Haan made sure it had tons of elements: breathtaking photos of all five artists jumping, jeté-ing, chassé-ing and kicking, profiles on each person and an amazing behind-the-scenes video of the photo shoot (check it out below!).

Dance News
(From left) Darriel Johnakin, Diego Pasillas, and Emma Sutherland (all photos by Erin Baiano)

Congratulations to 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.

We also want you to get social! We'll be factoring social media likes and shares into our final tallies. Be sure to show your favorite finalist some love on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, sharing their profile pages and using the hashtag #DanceSpiritCMS.

Cover Model Search
Photo by Erin Baiano

In our "Dear Katie" series, Miami City Ballet soloist Kathryn Morgan answers your pressing dance questions. Have something you want to ask Katie? Email dearkatie@dancespirit.com for a chance to be featured!


Dear Katie,

When I sit with the soles of my feet together, my knees easily touch the floor, and most exercises to improve turnout are easy for me. But when I'm actually dancing, my turnout is terrible, especially on my standing leg. Why doesn't my flexibility translate to turnout?

Chrissy

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Dear Katie
Via Twitter

Would that we could all live in Taylor Swift's Pride-topia, booty-popping with Todrick Hall and sharing snow cones with Adam Rippon in our rainbow-flag-bedecked RV park. But much as we're loving "You Need to Calm Down" and other similarly upbeat celebrations of Pride month, this is also a time to recognize the battles the members of the LGBTQIA+ community have fought—and are still fighting. That's one of the reasons why "I'm Gay," a new dance video by Eugene Lee Yang of The Try Guys, is so important.

The dark, deeply personal video is Yang's coming-out moment. We see Yang being rejected by his family, condemned by a preacher, and attacked by a hostile mob after attempting to express himself as a gay man. Though not a professional dancer (as we found out in "The Try Guys Try Ballet"), Yang is a gifted mover; he choreographed the project himself, and gathered a group of talented performers to bring the story to life.

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