Getty Images

Six Around-the-House Places to Improv

As dancers, the studio is our home. So if you've been feeling a little lost while practicing social distancing in your actual home, know that your fellow artists are all right there with you. One of the most empowering things about dance, however, is that you can bust out your killer moves anytime, anywhere. While we're all staying safe and eagerly awaiting the day we can return to our happy place, see how many of these out-of-the-box, in-the-house improv spots you can check off your bucket list.

Your Kitchen


Ah, the kitchen. Our favorite place for both culinary and contemporary-improv inspiration. Put on your favorite all-the-feels playlist and see what you can cook up.

Your Backyard


Fresh air makes for beautiful dancing. Take a dancer's version of a nature walk right in your backyard, front porch, or driveway.

Your Staircase

Try following in the legendary footsteps of Bill "Bojangles" Robinson and choreograph your own stair dance.

Your Closet (No, Seriously)


Here's a challenge: Try improv-ing in a small space, like an open closet or stairwell, and see how it affects your movement. You may discover something new about your dancing!

Your Bathroom


Nowhere better to keep working on that port de bras than in front of your bathroom mirror.

Your Living Room


Whoever you're home with, we'd love to see you all gather together and give us the best #LivingRoomDance you've got.

Latest Posts

Martha Graham Dance Company's Xin Ying (James Jin, courtesy Ying)

How to Dance Outside

We've all been stubbing our toes and whacking our elbows dancing in less-than-roomy indoor spots lately (hello, 5' x 8' patch of bathroom tile). If you're lucky enough to have access to a backyard or other big green space right now, you're probably itching to take your grand allegro outside, especially as the weather gets warmer. But how can you dance safely and productively in the great outdoors? We got pro tips from Mike Tyus of Jacob Jonas The Company and Xin Ying of Martha Graham Dance Company, both of whom were dancing outside long before COVID-19 hit.

Keep Reading SHOW LESS
The cast of Center Stage in a promotional poster (courtesy Sony Pictures Home Entertainment)

The Making of "Center Stage," as Remembered by Its Dance Stars

Whether you first watched it in a theater two decades ago or on Netflix last week, odds are you feel a deep connection to Center Stage. The cult classic, which premiered May 12, 2000, is arguably the greatest dance film ever made. (Dance obsessives might take issue with the "cult" before "classic," not to mention the "dance" before "film.") Jody Sawyer's ballet journey—which combines oh-wow-I've-had-those-blisters realism with wait-does-she-have-magic-color-changing-pointe-shoes fantasy—stands the test of time, early-aughts fashion be darned. We've memorized its highly quotable lines, laughed with (and, gently, at) its heroes, and been inspired by its sincere love of dance and dancers.

To celebrate Center Stage's 20th anniversary, we asked five of its dance stars to talk through their memories of the filming process. Here are their stories of on-set bonding, post-puke kissing scenes, and life imitating art imitating life.

Keep Reading SHOW LESS

2020 Dance Grads: We Want to Put You on Our Cover!

Hello, all you members of the great Dance Class of 2020. With the world on lockdown, this hasn't been the graduation season you expected. You likely weren't able to go to prom; your commencement ceremonies have probably been delayed or canceled; and you might not have been able to take your planned-for final bow onstage.

Since you're missing out on so much, we'd like to give you a virtual ovation, to recognize all you've accomplished. And what's the highest honor we can bestow? The cover of Dance Spirit!

Here's the plan:

  • If you're a high school or college senior dancer, use this form to submit your information and dance portrait.
  • Each day during the month of May, we'll create a digital Dance Spirit cover starring one of you, chosen at random—31 covers in total.
  • At the end of the month, we'll create a "commencement video" featuring even more of your submitted dance photos.
  • 100 of you, selected by lottery, will also receive free one-year subscriptions to the print magazine.

Merde, 2020 graduates, as you dance your way into the future!

High School and College Senior Dancers: Submit Your Photo Here

Editors' Picks

Enter the Cover Model Search