Ballet Hispánico's Melissa Fernandez and Llyvan Verdecia. Photo by Jessica Wyatt, courtesy Michelle Tabnick PR

We're Drooling Over These 9 Dancers' Summer Weddings

Love is always in the air during summer wedding season...particularly for ballet dancers who are putting their company layoffs to good use.

Over the past few months, lots of dancers have used their time away from the studio to say their vows and maybe squeeze in a honeymoon before the fall season starts. Take a peek at some of our favorite dancer-ly ceremonies—we dare you not to say, "Awww."

New York City Ballet's Sterling Hyltin got her happily ever after—and isn't afraid to show it.

New York City Ballet principal Sterling Hyltin tied the knot with Ryan Bailes, a research analyst at an investment management firm, and looked about as happy as a bride can be.

Staatsballett Berlin's Luciana Voltolini had a dreamy destination wedding.

Staatsballett Berlin soloist Luciana Voltolini (who used to dance with American Ballet Theatre and Boston Ballet) married German cinematographer, musician and designer John Tyler Vesneski in a seaside ceremony in Split, Croatia. The delicate details of her dress were almost as jaw-dropping as the Adriatic coastline that served as the backdrop to their vows.

Joffrey Ballet's April Daly and Miguel Angel Blanco performed the most elegant first dance.

The wedding of Joffrey dancers April Daly and Miguel Angel Blanco came complete with a costume change for the bride—and plenty of dancers attending as guests and members of the wedding party.

Ballet Hispánico dancers Melissa Fernandez and Lyvan Verdecia had their romance immortalized in The New York Times.

Ballet Hispánico's Melissa Fernandez and Lyvan Verdecia returned to where they met—Havana—for a ceremony on the beach at Club Havana. The New York Times' Vows column went all in on the epic story of their romance.

National Ballet of Canada's Skylar Campbell and Jaclyn Oakley looked like they stepped out of a wedding fashion spread.

National Ballet of Canada principal Skylar Campbell and corps member Jaclyn Oakley said "I do" on June 30 in Campbell's home state of California. The pair met in 2009 at Banff Summer Arts Festival, just prior to joining NBoC as apprentices.

American Ballet Theatre's April Giangeruso went full glam as a bride.

Earlier this month, American Ballet Theatre corps member April Giangeruso married Blake Bhatia, founder of digital recruiting agency Synergy Interactive, in a ceremony in Maryland. The newlyweds are now partners in both life and business: They're co-founders of the trendy leotard brand Chameleon Activewear.

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Matthew Murphy, Courtesy DKC/O&M

MJ The Musical Casts Its Michael

MJ The Musical has found its Michael Jackson: Ephraim Sykes.

If there's anyone who's up to the task, it's easily Sykes. The Tony-nominated triple threat has proved his mettle time and again in six Broadway shows. No stranger to the soul and pop genres, he was in the casts of Memphis and Motown The Musical, and is currently starring as David Ruffin in Ain't Too Proud: The Life and Times of The Temptations.

Ailey II artistic director Troy Powell teaching an Ailey Workshop at NYCDA. Courtesy NYCDA

NYCDA Is Redefining the Convention Scene Through Life-Changing Opportunities

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:

Paul Kolnik, Courtesy NYCB

Dance Magazine Award Honoree: Sara Mearns

Sara Mearns is a force. There is a monumentality to her dancing that was apparent even as a young corps member of 19, cast in her first Swan Lake with New York City Ballet. She threw herself into the role heart and soul, stretching each shape to the limit, trusting the music to carry her to a deep place (and her partner to save her should she go too far). In the 13 years since, her dancing has gained in power and focus, while never losing that edge of risk.

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