Prince Harry Took Pre-Ballet; Couldn't Quite Keep Up
Screenshot via @sussexroyal on Instagram
It's a great week to be following the Duke and Duchess of Sussex (aka Prince Harry and Meghan Markle). First, on Tuesday there was the surprise launch of @sussexroyal, the couple's very own official Instagram account. Now, we have some seriously adorable photos and details from Harry's solo visit Wednesday to the YMCA South Ealing in West London. Among other things, the dashing royal made friends with a baby and tried out his pre-ballet skills. What a time to be alive, friends.
As People reported, Prince Harry was at the Y to learn about how that organization supports local young people, and to participate in a roundtable discussion for The Royal Foundation's "Heads Together" campaign on mental health. (Meghan has no public appearances planned for this month, as she's coming very close to the end of her pregnancy.)
While visiting the YMCA, Harry found time to drop in on a pre-ballet class for 4- to 6-year-olds. As one does, Harry asked a 5-year-old named Emanuel what his favorite part of class was, to which Emanuel replied "the ballet challenge." Apparently, this involves balancing in a parallel retiré position with a plastic disc on your head. A CHALLENGE INDEED. As another tiny dancer reported with delight, His Highness did in fact wobble upon attempting the challenge. Welp, you can't go pro in a day—no matter what dance-movie montages might have us believe.
The ginger prince even stuck around after class to socialize with his fellow dancers (#relatable). Major takeaways included 5-year-old Arya's assertion that she's been doing ballet "for 100 years." Arya, we know how you feel.
Before departing, Harry told the class, "Well done! You were fantastic," and that in his opinion, they all deserve gold stars—"except you," he teased our challenge-loving friend Emanuel, who'd unfortunately chosen that moment to zone out and look the other way. Didn't know you were such a savage when it comes to classroom etiquette, Harry!
(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 by clicking on their names here:
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.
When it comes to injury-prone body parts, knees reign supreme for dancers. But a little strengthening can go a long way in preventing painful outcomes. We turned to Dirk Hartog, a physical therapist with Westside Dance Physical Therapy in NYC, for three exercises that'll support and stabilize your knees.
James Whiteside (Jayme Thornton for Dance Magazine)
Say you're perpetually impeccable designer Thom Browne. Say you're planning your Spring 2020 Paris menswear show along a "Versailles country club" theme. Say you want a world-class danseur to open the show with some kind of appropriately fabulous choreography.
Who do you call? James Whiteside, of course. On Saturday, the American Ballet Theatre principal—wearing pointe shoes and a glorious pinstriped tutu—kicked off Browne's presentation at the École des Beaux-Arts with a 15-minute, show-stealing solo. Whiteside choreographed the piece himself, with the help of detailed notes from the designer.