Playlists

The Songs Your Favorite Dance Artists Can't Stop Listening To

The most-played song on your Spotify says a lot about you. Maybe it's that guilty pleasure track you dance to while you're in the kitchen, or the one you have to listen to before going onstage.

We talked to 10 of our favorite pros about the song that's racked up the most plays on their phones—whether it's one they teach to, cross-train to, or just a song that helps them escape.


Miami City Ballet's Nathalia Arja: "Finesse" by Bruno Mars

Arja in a supported penchee, her partner behind her, with several other women behind them in arabesque. She wears a light pink dress.

Daniel Azoulay, Courtesy Miami City Ballet

"I really like his songs and I love the way he moves. I'm always dancing to any of his songs—it puts me in such a great mood!"

The Washington Ballet's Ashley Murphy: "Broken But I'm Healed" by Byron Cage

Murphy as Myrta in Giselle, in first arabesque downstage with a bunch of willis upstage gesturing towards her.

Theo Kossenas, Courtesy The Washington Ballet

"This gospel song is so inspirational to me."

Pacific Northwest Ballet's Leta Biasucci: Mariah Carey's "Shake It Off"

Biasucci onstage in a flowing purple dress, with the skirt floating around her as if she just landed from a jump or turn. She's in a long fourth position with her arms extended overhead.

Angela Sterling, Courtesy PNB

"Mariah Carey is a favorite in the soloist women's dressing room."

B-girl and Choreographer Ephrat Asherie: "A Flower is A Lovesome Thing" by Ehud Asherie

Asherie balancing on her head onstage against a blue and yellow starry backdrop. Her arms are extended behind her and her legs are on top of her.

Robert Altman, Courtesy Asherie

"The most-played song at the moment is actually my brother Ehud's music. He's a pianist and we worked together on a piece called Odeon."

Pennsylvania Ballet's Sterling Baca: "Ride Out" by Schoolboy Q

Baca center stage in an attitude, wearing white tights and a blue jacket. There are a few others onstage watching him.

Alexander Iziliaev, Courtesy Pennsylvania Ballet

"I listen to music while at the gym, so it's usually hip-hop, rap or reggaeton."

Tap Dancer Caleb Teicher: "Sweet Pea" by Amos Lee

Teicher at a photoshoot in front of a light gray background, wearing a maroon suit, bright yellow shirt and silver, red and black tap shoes. He seems to be in the middle of a tap step, one leg raised in the air with the knee bent, arms casually flung in the air, looking down at his feet.

Jayme Thornton

"267 plays. It's a song I use while teaching (dance teachers know how that goes...)."

Boston Ballet's Joy Womack: ​ "Fingertips" by One Republic, "Romantic" by Stanaj

Womack in rehearsal in a studio, wearing a tan and blue leotard and a white romantic practice tutu. She kneels on the ground, her arms gesturing in front of her, eyes turned downward, as if rehearsing a dramatic moment.

Kyoungjin Kim, courtesy Universal Ballet

"And of course whatever I'm currently rehearsing. Music is my drug of choice. It's my secret weapon and my horse blinders."

Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater's Jamar Roberts: ​"See You Again" (feat. Kali Uchis) by Tyler The Creator

Jamar Roberts onstage dancing in a spotlight. He wears silver pants, an open red jacket, exposing his bare chest, and a red hat. He has one foot crossed in front of the other, one arm extended upward in a semi circle shape, the other one extended downward.

Paul Kolnik, courtesy Ailey

"Music is a must for the daily subway ride to and from Brooklyn."

Dutch National Ballet's Michaele DePrince: "I Was Here" by Beyoncé

Michaela Deprince jumps against a red background at a photoshoot. She's wearing a gold costume with a classical tutu, her legs are straight and she looks directly at the camera, arms up and reaching behind her.

Michel Schnater

"It's the last song I listen to before I go onstage."

Broadway
Courtesy Macy's, Inc.

As you're prepping your Thanksgiving meal, why not throw in a dash of dance?

This year's Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade is stuffed (pun intended) with performances from four stellar Broadway shows, the Radio City Rockettes and students from three New York City dance institutions.

Tune in to NBC November 28 from 9 am to noon (in all time zones), or catch the rebroadcast at 2 pm (also in all time zones). Here's what's in store:

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

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:

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Rant & Rave
Sergei Polunin. Photo by British Broadcasting Corporation and Polunin Ltd., Courtesy Sundance Selects.

Last week, Variety reported that Sergei Polunin would reunite with the team behind Dancer for another documentary. "Where 'Dancer' looked at his whole life, family and influences," director Steven Cantor said, " 'Satori' will focus more squarely on his creative process as performer and, for the first time ever, choreographer." The title references a poorly received evening of work by the same name first presented by Polunin in 2017. (It recently toured to Moscow and St. Petersburg.)

I cannot be the only person wondering why we should care.

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Sponsored by Harlequin Floors
Left: Hurricane Harvey damage in Houston Ballet's Dance Lab; Courtesy Harlequin. Right: The Dance Lab pre-Harvey; Nic Lehoux, Courtesy Houston Ballet.

"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.

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