More studio time = more improvement? Not always, according to Roman Zhurbin, American Ballet Theatre soloist and certified personal trainer. "It's absolutely necessary to take rest days so your body can reset and you stay motivated," says Zhurbin. "Seven days a week of hard training is just unhealthy." What is healthy: letting your body recover from a jam-packed dance schedule so you can give your best possible performance.
Photo by Andrew Ross, Courtesy Birmingham Royal Ballet.
Where in the world is Miko Fogarty? Just three years ago, she seemed unstoppable. After being featured in the 2011 ballet documentary First Position, she became a teenage social-media star, winning top prizes at competitions in Moscow and Varna and at Youth American Grand Prix, and dancing in galas around the world. Last most of us heard, it was 2015 and she had just joined the corps of Birmingham Royal Ballet—and even appeared on Dance Spirit's cover. A year later, she dropped off the ballet radar.
What's better then a Disney movie remake? The answer: A Disney movie remake in the form of a musical! Disney Channel's giving the 2003 hit comedy "Freaky Friday" a reboot with all the singing and dancing your heart could ever desire. But choreographing the remake of a classic Disney-movie-turned-TV-musical is no joke, which is why two-time Tony nominee John Carrafa was the perfect man for the job. Known for incorporating real life, everyday movement into his dances, Carrafa brings magic into even the most mundane of movements. From having dancers "slice oranges to the rhythm of the music" to using energetic athleticism, Carrafa's choreography is bound to bring an exciting new spin to this tale.
America's Favorite Judges were LIVING for Darius and Comfort's hip-hop routine (screenshot via YouTube)
Yesterday's episode was the all-important final step before the live TV episodes begin. Last Monday night, Vanessa, Mary, and Nigel cut half of the remaining ladies after seeing them perform a duet outside their style with a male All-Star. And last night, it was (finally!) the men's turn. Here's what went down.
Strong, stable, sufficiently stretched quads are the secret ingredient to everything from straighter knees to fully extended arabesques. But what are the most effective ways to get them? Dance Spirit turned to Michael Gernold, a personal trainer with Progressive Personal Training in NYC, for a crash course on lengthening and strengthening your quads.
We always love dance-infused music videos, but the vid for Ryan Blyth's new hit "Raise A Glass" is on a whole different level. Why? Because it stars none other than Amanda LaCount, the dance maverick who's challenging preconceptions on and off the dance floor with her beautiful curves and her message of #breakingthestereotype. Not only does Amanda deliver a fabulously high-energy performance, but she also appears to have choreographed the number (is there anything this dancing dynamo can't do?).
Dancer and choreographer Sherrie Silver is living her best life. The 23 year old, who's most recent choreography was featured in Childish Gambino's controversial "This Is America" music video, continues to bring African dance to the forefront of pop culture with the help of Vogue magazine. Brooklyn is the perfect backdrop for this dancing queen as she breaks down five of her favorite Afro dance moves: the Gwara Gwara, the Hipjook, the Neza, the Snakula, and the Shaku Shaku.
Photo by Sophie Elgort, courtesy Isabella Boylston
Last year, American Ballet Theatre principal Isabella Boylston decided to bring world-renowned ballet to her hometown of Sun Valley, ID. The first three-day Ballet Sun Valley festival featured stars including Maria Kochetkova and Misty Copeland, performing solos, pas de deux, and a world premiere by Gemma Bond. Audiences raved so much that the festival will continue this year, July 17 and 18. The talent list has expanded: There'll be 25 dancers from companies including the Paris Opéra Ballet, Royal Danish Ballet, San Francisco Ballet, and New York City Ballet, and the festival will again offer a day of free dance classes for local students. Dance Spirit caught up with Boylston to get all the details—and to find out what starting a ballet festival is really like.
Fik-Shun and Cyrus getting in on the Fortnite fun (via Instagram)
A year (and five seasons) after being released, the video game sensation, Fortnite, is here to stay—and so is the totally unexpected dance craze it's launched. The game's comical dance moves have sparked legions of real-life recreations by everyone from professional actors to World Cup players.
And now even seasoned dancers like "SYTYCD" stars Fik-Shun and Cyrus have jumped on the Fortnite train:
The Phantom cast in Masquerade (photo by Alastair Muir, courtesy Broadway Booking Office)
The North American tour production of The Phantom of the Opera is massive, with a large cast and a fabulously elaborate set (including that famous chandelier). How do all those moving parts get from city to city, giving audiences across the country the same spectacular show? Unsurprisingly, cast and crew alike have their travel routines down to exact sciences. We talked to Emily Ramirez, a former professional ballet dancer who stars as Meg Giry, and to production stage manager Heather Chockley about how Phantom hits the road.
(Clockwise from top left) Jacalyn Tatro, Shelby Patterson, and Sydney Burtis (all photos by Erin Baiano)
Dance Spirit's 2018 Cover Model Search finalists: Sydney Burtis, ShelbyPatterson, and Jacalyn Tatro! One of them will win a spot on Dance Spirit's October 2018 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.
The contest is now closed. Look for the winner on our October cover!
It's obvious to anyone who's seen her tap that dance is Sydney Burtis' passion. But in many ways, dance has also become a form of therapy for Sydney: It's helped her find her voice, both inside and outside the studio. "Dance allows me to express things about this world and things within myself," she says. "It's the expression that really resonates with me."
It feels impossible to put the magic of Jacalyn Tatro's dancing into words, but "old soul" is a good place to start. With her coiled-spring energy and crystal-clear technique, Jacalyn imbues choreography with a gravity and poignancy you'd expect from a veteran professional dancer, not a rising college freshman.
Shelby Patterson can command a stage with a single look. That fierce presence, plus her laser-sharp focus and ball-of-fire energy, have made her a standout in both the contemporary and commercial worlds. "I'm always performing out to the audience," Shelby says. "People say things like, 'Oh, that's the Shelby face—she's in the zone.' "
Ukrainian ballet dancer Sergei Polunin doesn't appear to have completely shed his bad-boy skin. A new video from Rankin Hunger Magazine,"Sergei x Rankin," shows us what happens when Polunin is given total freedom to explore his tendency for raw, emotional movement. Paired with British photographer Rankin, the duo creates a captivating video that explores our primal need for unrestrained expression set to an alternative rock soundtrack by Husky Loops.