6 Dance-Filled Reasons to Tune in to Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade
Don't get us wrong: We're totally looking forward to enjoying a delicious Thanksgiving dinner. But one of our favorite parts of the holiday actually happens in the morning. We've got six reasons for you to wake up early on Turkey Day, and they're all part of Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade.
The 92nd annual holiday event airs at 9 am Eastern on NBC, and this year, you can catch live performances from five Broadway shows, plus everyone's favorite high-kicking dancers, the Radio City Rockettes.
Dance has long been a part of the festivities. The Rockettes' first Macy's parade appearance happened in 1957, and performances from Great White Way musicals have been a tradition since 1977. Here's what to look out for on Thanksgiving morning.
Head Over Heels
This gender-bending musical comedy will have you tapping your toes to the beat, thanks to its infectious soundtrack by The Go-Gos. But Spencer Liff's electric choreography will really make you want to dance. Call it a pre-Thanksgiving meal workout.
Which Mean Girls characters will make an appearance at the parade? The Plastics? Cady Heron? Janis and Damian? Hopefully all of the above, and maybe even faves like Kevin Gnapoor and Principal Duvall. Whoever's there, they're sure to be serving up Casey Nicholaw's choreography. And maybe Glen Coco will even be passing out candy cane grams. 'Tis the season!
My Fair Lady
The parade may air in the morning, but the cast of My Fair Lady will likely dance all night with moves courtesy of Christopher Gattelli. Here's hoping they'll perform the raucous number "Get Me to the Church on Time," starring a soft-shoeing, split-jumping Norbert Leo Butz.
Here's your chance for a first look at the newest musical to hit the Great White Way. After opening last week to rave reviews, The Prom, another Casey Nicholaw special, hits the streets of New York City. It tells the hilarious yet poignant tale—through song-and-dance extravaganzas—of what happens when narcissistic Broadway celebrities decide to be activists to keep their stars from fading. Their cause? To help a lesbian teen in small-town Indiana after her high school prom is cancelled, only because she wanted to bring her girlfriend as her date.
Summer: The Donna Summer Musical
Sergio Trujillo serves up his stylized take on disco dancing in Summer: The Donna Summer Musical. Tune in to see the all-female ensemble get down as they (and probably you) belt out the Queen of Disco's catchy hits.
Radio City Rockettes
The Rockettes are synonymous with Christmas in New York. Their annual parade performance will feature plenty of precision, sequins and, of course, their iconic kick line. What better way to kick off the season?
Now that you've got your marching orders, don't forget to tune in!
Back in 2011 when Joe Lanteri first approached Katie Langan, chair of Marymount Manhattan College's dance department, about getting involved with New York City Dance Alliance, she was skeptical about the convention/competition world.
"But I was pleasantly surprised by the enormity of talent that was there," she says. "His goal was to start scholarship opportunities, and I said okay, I'm in."
Today, it's fair to say that Lanteri has far surpassed his goal of creating scholarship opportunities. But NYCDA has done so much more, bridging the gap between the convention world and the professional world by forging a wealth of partnerships with dance institutions from Marymount to The Ailey School to Complexions Contemporary Ballet and many more. There's a reason these companies and schools—some of whom otherwise may not see themselves as aligned with the convention/competition world—keep deepening their relationships with NYCDA.
Now, college scholarships are just one of many ways NYCDA has gone beyond the typical weekend-long convention experience and created life-changing opportunities for students. We rounded up some of the most notable ones:
We knew that Ivo van Hove and Anne Teresa de Keersmaeker's production of West Side Story would challenge our preconceived notions about the show.
But a recent Vogue story gives us a taste of just how nontraditional the Broadway revival will be. Most notably, van Hove is cutting "I Feel Pretty" and the "Somewhere" ballet, condensing the show into one act to better reflect the urgency of the 48-hour plot. (The choice has been approved by the West Side Story estate, including Sondheim, who has "long been uncomfortable" with some of the "I Feel Pretty" lyrics.)
"The show must go on" may be a platitude we use to get through everything from costume malfunctions to stormy moods. But when it came to overcoming a literal hurricane, Houston Ballet was buoyed by this mantra to go from devastated to dancing in a matter of weeks—with the help of Harlequin Floors, Houston Ballet's longstanding partner who sprang into action to build new floors in record time.