Just for Fun

We're Drooling Over These 9 Dancers' Summer Weddings

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

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.

Day in the Life

Most people may know Derek Dunn for his impeccable turns and alluring onstage charisma. But the Boston Ballet principal dancer is just as charming offstage, whether he's playing with his 3-year-old miniature labradoodle or working in the studio. Dance Magazine recently spent the day with Dunn as he prepared for his debut as Albrecht in the company's upcoming run of Giselle.

Dance Training
Rosalie O'Connor, Courtesy Mark Morris Dance Group

You know compelling musicality when you see it. But how do you cultivate it? It's not as elusive as it might seem. Musicality, like any facet of dance, can be developed and honed over time—with dedicated, detailed practice. At its most fundamental, it's "respect for the music, that this is your partner," says Kate Linsley, academy principal of the School of Nashville Ballet.

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The USC Kaufman graduating class with Mikhail Baryshnikov. Gus Ruelas/USC

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:

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In Memoriam
Ross Parkes, right, teaching in Shanghai in 1983. Lan-Lan Wang is at left. Courtesy Lan-Lan Wang.

Notable dancer and beloved teacher, Ross Parkes, 79, passed away on August 5, 2019 in New York City. He was a founding faculty member at Taipei National University of the Arts in Taiwan, where he taught from 1984 to 2006. Lin Hwai-min, artistic director of Cloud Gate Dance Theater, said: "He nurtured two generations of dancers in Taiwan, and his legacy will continue."

About his dancing, Tonia Shimin, professor emerita at UC Santa Barbara and producer of Mary Anthony: A Life in Modern Dance, said this: "He was an exquisite, eloquent dancer who inhabited his roles completely."

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