T-minus a week until one of the happiest days of the year: World Ballet Day will be back forroundthree on Tuesday, October 4!
When we say that World Ballet Day is straight-up Ballet Christmas, we aren't exaggerating. Since 2014, the annual event has brought together top-notch companies from all over the world—and we do mean ALL over, from Australia to Russia—for a celebration of the art form we love so much. What does that look like? It looks like a full day of live broadcasts, inviting fans inside technique classes, rehearsals and backstage preparations. Last year, the event pulled in more than 350,000 viewers from 150 countries.
The Royal Ballet in class during World Ballet Day 2015 (screenshot via YouTube)
This year's featured companies are The Australian Ballet, Bolshoi Ballet, The Royal Ballet, The National Ballet of Canada, and San Francisco Ballet; they'll air a combined 20 hours of behind-the-scenes footage. (The event actually starts at 10 pm October 3 EST, with the Australian Ballet, and then moves across the globe, concluding with San Francisco Ballet on the afternoon of October 4.) There's a cool new twist, though: This time around, each of the five partner companies have invited a whole slew of nearby regional dance organizations to participate in their World Ballet Day broadcasts. It's a doozy of a list: Hong Kong Ballet, Queensland Ballet, West Australian Ballet, English National Ballet, Birmingham Royal Ballet, Scottish Ballet, Northern Ballet, Pacific Northwest Ballet, Houston Ballet, Boston Ballet, Miami City Ballet, Ballets du Monte Carlo and Dutch National Ballet.
I mean. You can't NOT watch this.
You can get involved, too. On the day of the broadcast, chat with other ballet fans as you watch the broadcast at worldballetday.com, and submit questions for the dancers using the hashtag #worldballetday on Twitter.
Gabriel Figueredo in a variation from Raymonda. VAM Productions, Courtesy YAGP.
This week, over 1,000 young hopefuls gathered in New York City for the Youth America Grand Prix finals, giving them the chance to compete for scholarships and contracts to some of the world's top ballet schools and companies. Roughly 85 dancers made it to the final round at Lincoln Center's David H. Koch Theater on Wednesday. Today, the 20th anniversary of YAGP came to a close at the competition's awards ceremony. Read on to find out who won!
After a string of ballet-company rejections, Jennifer Sydor (here in Laura Peterson's "Failure") found success in other areas of the dance world. (Stephen Delas Heras, courtesy Jennifer Sydor)
In her senior year at Butler University, Jennifer Sydor auditioned for more than a dozen regional ballet companies—and got a string of "no, thank you" responses. "I have an athletic build, and my movement quality isn't the typical ballet aesthetic," Sydor says. "But I'd been laser-focused on ballet. When I didn't get a ballet contract, I was heartbroken."
Her one job offer came from Kim Robards Dance, a small modern company based in Aurora, CO. After attending KRD's summer intensive, Sydor ended up accepting a yearlong position with the troupe. "I was relieved and happy to begin my career," she says. She's been working as a contemporary dancer ever since.
In the dance world, rejection is part of the package. That doesn't make it any more pleasant. But whether you didn't get the Nutcracker role of your dreams or you weren't picked for a job despite feeling like you aced the audition, you can emerge from even the most gut-wrenching "no" smarter and stronger.
Ballet West principal Beckanne Sisk as Kitri (Luke Isley, courtesy Ballet West)
Guess who's baaaaack?! Your resident Dance Spirit astrologers! And on the eve of the Youth America Grand Prix awards ceremony, we thought it was the perfect time to pair each zodiac sign with a variation commonly seen during the competition. After many painstaking hours spent researching, consulting the stars, and staring wistfully into the sky, we compiled our data and present you with the definitive list of each star sign as a YAGP variation! As we said last time, don't @ us if you're not happy with your pairing—the stars don't lie, baby!