25 to Watch 2018: Eduardo Guerrero
Eduardo Guerrero is flamenco in its richest current incarnation. The Cádiz-born 34-year-old crafted a solid career in the companies of some of Spain's most important dancers, including Eva Yerbabuena, Antonio Canales and Rocío Molina. However, his two solo shows, El callejón de los pecados ("Sin Alley") and Guerrero ("Warrior"), are what have brought Guerrero to the forefront of flamenco dance in Spain.
The latter production received the Audience Award at the 2017 Jerez Festival due in large part to Guerrero's astonishing endurance: Dancing for nearly an hour and a half straight, pausing only to change costumes (sometimes onstage), Guerrero tells the captivating story of his relationship with women. The archetypal roles of the mother, the lover and the friend, performed by three female singers, all demand a different emotional and physical response, allowing Guerrero to display a breathtaking array of movement that often pushes him to the perilous limits of human motion.
Guerrero has deftly created an entirely unique style built on a flawless technique that appeals to both flamenco purists and fans of innovation. While his aesthetic is contemporary, his physical language is rigidly traditional. No one can say Guerrero's work is a product of fusion.
Michele Byrd-McPhee's uncle was a DJ for the local black radio station in Philadelphia, where she was born. As a kid she was always dancing to the latest music, including a new form of powerful poetry laid over pulsing beats that was the beginning of what we now call hip hop.
Byrd-McPhee became enamored of the form and went on to a career as a hip-hop dancer and choreographer, eventually founding the Ladies of Hip-Hop Festival and directing the New York City chapter of Everybody Dance Now!. Over the decades, she has experienced hip hop's growth from its roots in the black community into a global phenomenon—a trajectory she views with both pride and caution.
On one hand, the popularity of hip hop has "made a global impact," says Byrd-McPhee. "It's provided a voice for so many people around the world." The downside is "it's used globally in ways that the people who made the culture don't benefit from it."
Just four years ago, the University of Southern California's Glorya Kaufman School of Dance welcomed its first class of BFA students. The program—which boasts world-class faculty and a revolutionary approach to training focused on collaboration and hybridity—immediately established itself as one of the country's most prestigious and most innovative.
Now, the first graduating class is entering the dance field. Here, six of the 33 graduates share what they're doing post-grad, what made their experience at USC Kaufman so meaningful and how it prepared them for their next steps:
Every dancer knows there's as much magic taking place backstage as there is in what the audience sees onstage. Behind the scenes, it takes a village, says American Ballet Theatre's wig and makeup supervisor, Rena Most. With wig and makeup preparations happening in a studio of their own as the dancers rehearse, Most and her team work to make sure not a single detail is lost.
Dance Magazine recently spoke to Most to find out what actually goes into the hair and makeup looks audiences see on the ABT stage.