We made it!

Happy New Year!

There's nothing quite like the start of a new year. It's like having a clean whiteboard, a just-dusted nightstand and freshly-sharpened pencils all rolled into one to-do list just waiting to be accomplished.

The Dance Spirit staff never shies away from a challenge, and this year our New Year's Resolutions are lofty yet doable.

My resolution is the same as it has been for the last seven years: I promise to continue working my bum off to make Dance Spirit the best magazine ever. I will continue scouring dance studios big, small, near and far in addition to the competition and convention scene, YouTube and TV for rising dance stars. Plus, I'll spend too many hours on Twitter and Instagram stalking the big-name dancers. And then I resolve to write about all of them for you.

Here's what the rest of the DS editors promise to accomplish in 2014...

"I resolve to be less afraid of dance classes that aren't ballet." —Meggie Hermanson, fashion editor

"I just moved to the city, so I'm going to take full advantage of dance in NYC. That means taking more classes, seeing more performances, meeting more people and letting my inner dance-nerd shine." —Maggie McNamara, assistant editor

"In 2014, I'm going to be as fearless and awesome as this Tiny Tapper. (Also maybe I'll learn a little tap? For real, though?)" —Margaret Fuhrer, associate editor

"VEGAS. I will go there to see Britney Spears' new Piece of Me show. Then I'll wait outside the stage door so we can meet and become best friends. After that, I'll probably take my new BFF to see a few Cirque du Soleil shows." —Rachel Zar, managing editor

What's on your New Year's To-Do List? Let us know in the comments!

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Picture This: How Visualization Can Up Your Dance Game

You're standing onstage at the opening of the Jennifer Lopez–Shakira Super Bowl halftime show, holding your opening pose, waiting for the music to start. You can see a smudge of dirt on your white sneakers. It's dark, but you know that intense colored lights are about to hit your face. Nervous sweat begins to form on the back of your neck.

Actually, no: You're standing in your living room, about to perform the J.Lo-inspired piece your instructor is teaching over Zoom. But that kind of visualization—imagining that you're in a high-stakes performance scenario, and focusing on super-fine details—can help take your dancing to the next level. In fact, visualization is a great skill to work while social distancing: It requires no space, no special equipment, and it'll be a great tool to have in your toolbox once you're back on an IRL stage. Here's more on why and how to do it.

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A Letter from the Editor in Chief

Hi, dance friends. It is a strange time to be a person in the world, and an especially strange time to be a dancer. As the dance community faces the coronavirus crisis, a lot of you are coping with closed studios, canceled performances and competitions, and a general sense of anxiety about how your world will look going forward.

Yes, dancers are super resilient, and there's been a lot of inspiring community-building happening. #LivingRoomDances and Instagram dance parties and virtual ballet classes with the pros are wonderful. Dance can, and should, be a bright spot in the darkness. But that weird, empty feeling you have? It might be grief. The loss of the certainty of daily class, the loss of the promise of that big end-of-year performance—that's real. The dance studio has always been a safe place; it's especially hard not to have that outlet now, when you need it most.

We're here for you. We—and our friends at Dance Magazine, Pointe, Dance Teacher, The Dance Edit, and Dance Business Weekly—are doing our best to document the hurdles facing the dance industry, and to advocate for dancers in need. We're developing more online content that will help you maintain and improve your technique while you're at home, and process the mental and emotional fallout of all this upheaval. (You can keep up with the latest stories here.) And we're still making our print magazine. We have issues planned and shot, full of great dance stories and beautiful photos. We're not going anywhere.

We want to hear from you. Talk to us. Or dance to us. Or both. We won't stop moving, and you shouldn't, either.

Margaret

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