If you're like us, we're guessing you're counting the days until Step Up: All In—the fifth installment in the still-chugging Step Up series—hits theaters. (For the record: 59 days to go! It opens August 8.) Crazy dance sequences featuring alllll the stars of the past movies, including Alyson Stoner, Briana Evigan, Ryan Guzman, Adam Sevani, Misha Gabriel, tWitch and the Lombard Twins? Yes. Yes PLEASE.
Well, good news for the impatient: There's a brand-new trailer for this extravaganza, and it's a solid two-and-a-half minutes of dance-y goodness. Cheesy goodness, too—Step Up films are never hesitant about layering on the cheese—but honestly, we wouldn't have it any other way. (Would we even recognize a Step Up movie if it didn't include lines like, "There's a magic that happens when you dance...for one perfect moment, you feel totally alive"?)
Here at DS, we live for the Step Up movies. Whether Channing Tatum is romancing Jenna Dewan with his slick dance moves, or Alyson Stoner and Adam Sevani are sweetly tap dancing through the NYC streets, every Step Up movie is just the best.
OK, so maybe the plot lines leave a bit to be desired, but who cares? The dancing is so good.
This summer, the mega-hit dance franchise gets back to the big screen with Step Up: All In, and we couldn't be more psyched. This time around, all of our past favorites are back: Alyson Stoner (as Camille), Ryan Guzman (as Sean), Adam Sevani (as Moose), Misha Gabriel (as Eddy), plus the Lombard Twins, tWitch, Christopher Scott (who also choreographed) and so many more.
The official trailer for the film was released last week and we can't. stop. watching.
Here ya go:
Step Up: All In hits theaters this summer. We'll race you to the theater!
Right about now, you're probably feeling the late-summer blues. Your studio may be closed for a few weeks (how dare your dance teachers take a vacation!), or you may be feeling pretty nostalgic for those intense master classes at Nationals. But all is not lost.
Enter CLI Studios, a membership-based organization that offers online dance classes. New videos are uploaded to the site every week, and members can access them for as long as they like. CLI (short for create, lead, inspire) classes are all intermediate, and they include warm-up and across the floor phrases, conditioning exercises and full-out combinations in a variety of styles, from contemporary to jazz to hip-hop to modern. And get this: The classes are taught by choreographers like Allison Holker, Misha Gabriel, Shaun Evaristo and Brian Friedman, so even if you didn't get to attend a big convention this year, you can still learn from some of your favorite pros.
Of course, there are pros and cons to this service. Learning a new combo from celebrity teachers is awesome, but there is more to taking class than cool choreo. When you're in class with other students, you learn how to dance in a group, and you can really work on developing your musicality and artistry. Being in a studio with others forces you to stay present, and just watching how other people approach certain movements can be really beneficial—not to mention all you gain from real-life interactions with teachers.
CLI Studios also comes with a price: After a free 14-day trial, membership costs kick in at $19.99 per month. Still, it may be worth it while your studio's on summer break. Check out a sneak peek of one of Misha Gabriel's hip-hop classes:
Sometimes we get a little sad when professional dancers decide to pursue singing careers. It feels like they're abandoning us.
But it doesn't look like "Dancing with the Stars" favorite Mark Ballas, who recently released his first single, "Get My Name," is forgetting about dance anytime soon. The video for the song, which came out yesterday, is jam-packed with steamy choreography by Misha Gabriel, Nick Bass, and Ballas himself. It's also directed by Ballas' "DWTS" buddy Derek Hough. And it features an A-team group of dancers (we see you, Taja Riley!) that includes a bunch of amazing "DWTS" pros—with the standout being gorgeous girl-of-the-moment Witney Carson. (In fact, if you saw Ballas' performance of "Get My Name" on "DWTS" last week, a lot of the choreo will look familiar.) It's like a little dance-world family party, and Ballas just happens to be the musical entertainment.
At this point it's not like you need more reasons to watch, but did we mention that the song itself is darn catchy? And that Ballas seems to be emulating JT's suave retro look, which is always, always a good idea?
Happy Friday, guys!
The only thing I love more than a cute dance couple is watching that cute dance couple groove together.
Thus, my latest obsession: David Moore's "Classic Dance Video." It stars power couple Moore and Sophia Aguiar dancing alongside a few more of my favorites: Ian Eastwood, Misha Gabriel and Tony Bellissimo.
The dancing in the video is top-notch (naturally), plus it's funny!
So take a little break on this fabulous Friday and enjoy "Classic Dance Video":
Oh, and if you, too, are a sucker for a sweet dance love story, you'll just looooove the May/June issue of DS!
I love the Throwback Thursday (hashtag it: #tbt) trend on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram—especially when my favorite dancers tag themselves in hilarious little kid recital photos.
Another thing I love?
Getting lost in the internet, re-watching all of my favorite dance performances from "So You Think You Can Dance," the Dance Spirit Cover Model Search (click here to enter!) and, naturally, flash mob proposals.
So, for your viewing pleasure, here's a little #tbt of my own, dance video-style! (Not my own dance videos—sadly those exist only on old-school VHS tapes—but rather a few of my all-time favorite clips from the past few years.)
Misha Gabriel & Teddy Forance's piece, Bulletproof, at the 2010 Capezio A.C.E. Awards:
Two of my forever-favorite choreographers + a neon-clad Dusty Button + that magic moment at the 3:23 mark = sheer genius. I screamed so loudly in the audience throughout this entire piece and I re-watch the video all the time.
The "Sound of Music" flash mob at Antwerp Central Station:
This was my introduction to flash mobs and I loved it so much I actually cried. Real, happy tears, falling down my face. This is the most joyful thing I can imagine.
Sarah Pippin's "Black Hawk Waltz" at New York City Dance Alliance Nationals:
Tiny Sarah, you are everything. This routine was even better in person. That balance at 1:11 had me holding my breath (not necessary: she nailed it), and when the music changed at 1:48 I vaguely recall yelling out an over-eager, "YEAHHHH!!!" That tiny ferocity matched perfectly with Travis Wall's choreography. A brilliant performance.
"Sexy Back" by the "So You Think You Can Dance" Season 2 Top 4:
I tried to learn it in my friend's living room. Wade Robson, I know you've done a lot of really amazing stuff throughout your career, but I think this is your best, funnest work ever.
Summer's winding down and while you prepare to head back to school and the studio, we're busy gearing up for the 2014 issues of Dance Spirit. But before we decide who will grace next year's pages (and covers!), we want to hear about the dancers and choreographers you're loving right now.
To get you started, we've shared who we're currently obsessing over:
After a summer spent at Nationals, I'm all about the comp kids right now. No matter how crowded the stage, my eyes were glued to Jayci Kalb of The Dance Centre in Tuscaloosa, AL, and Rachel Parkinson from The Dance Club in Orem, UT. On the professional side, I can't get enough of Chantel Aguirre. That girl personifies the meaning of "stunning." Oh and Misha Gabriel. He moves, and I swoon. —Alison Feller, editor in chief
I recently sat in on a rehearsal for Alexander Ekman's Episodes 31 at Joffrey Ballet, which rekindled my love for his high-energy, kooky choreography. (This piece was originally choreographed on The Juilliard School's class of 2012—and they all wore stick-on mustaches!) In terms of dancers, I will now and forever say Ryan Steele. I could watch him in Matilda the Musical a million times and never get bored. —Rachel Zar, managing editor
Tiler Peck and Justin Peck.
I'm a New York City Ballet girl through and through, and right now I'm obsessed with the company's two (unrelated) Pecks: principal Tiler Peck and soloist/choreographer Justin Peck. Not that either of them are all that new to the scene, but have you seen what they've been up to recently? In addition to being a gorgeously musical ballerina, Tiler held her own with jookin' star Lil Buck at the Vail International Dance Festival last weekend. And Justin's kinetically geometric, corps-centric ballets have been wonderful showcases for some of NYCB's most exciting young dancers. —Margaret Fuhrer, associate editor
Every time I open a New York City Ballet program and see the name Lauren Lovette, I get giddy with excitement. Lauren was featured on the September 2010 cover of DS when she was just a NYCB apprentice, and I remember thinking she was so sweet, down-to-earth and drop-dead gorgeous at her shoot. Now a soloist, I can't take my eyes off her whenever she's onstage. She has stunning technique and an almost addictive performance quality—I just can't stop watching her. —Michael Anne Bailey, assistant editor
Right now, I am obsessed with Christopher Wheeldon. His choreography is incredibly musical and romantic, and he creates shapes out of his dancers that I've never, ever seen before. Oh yeah, and his Carousel (A Dance) is set to my most favorite music of all time: "The Carousel Waltz"! —Helen Hope Rolfe, DS intern
Now it's your turn. Tell us which dancers and choreographers you're currently loving in the comments section below. You may just see them in DS!
As we've discussed, the DS crew was lucky enough to get into a screening of Step Up Revolution last night (huge thank-you to Broadway Dance Center for the tickets!). And oh my gosh, you guys: It's amazing. We laughed, we screamed, we almost peed our pants multiple times. Here are just five of the many reasons you should get your bums to the theater this Friday:
1. tWitch! Mr. Boss is THE BOSS in this movie. Seriously, I think he was the highlight of the film for me. His dancing is fantastic, of course, but it's more that every time he appears onscreen you want to giggle and pinch his adorable cheeks.
2. There are more famous faces everywhere. Kathryn McCormick and Misha Gabriel and Mia Michaels (and tWitch, of course) have big old speaking parts, but you knew that already. What you might not have known is that you'll also see Phillip Chbeeb, Madd Chadd, Brandon Bryant, Chris Scott, Billy Bell and many more of the dance world's finest scattered throughout the film.
3. Peter Gallagher is typecast, in the best way possible. Are you making a dance movie? Do you need a slightly sinister, but ultimately sympathetic, authority figure to say things like, "Dance may not be the career for you"? Bring in Mr. Gallagher, aka Jonathan from Center Stage, who plays Kathryn's money-hungry, anti-dance dad in Step Up Revolution. (As usual, his eyebrows are mesmerizing.)
4. The acting is stellar. Just kidding! But let's be honest: You're not going to this movie for the acting. It doesn't matter that nobody in the cast is going to win an Oscar, because the dancing is just. that. good. Which leads us to...
5. THE DANCING. It's pretty spectacular. The "Mob" concept translates to big groups of fabulous dancers doing awesome things in unconventional locations—things which at various points involve trampolines, elaborate body paint, harnesses, hydraulic cars, glow-in-the-dark costumes, and dollar bills falling from the sky. YES.
Step Up Revolution opens this Friday, the 27th!