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5 Things You Can Buy to Make Your Feet Feel Better ASAP

Dancers' feet take a beating. Show yours a little love with these tools that can help prevent both major injuries and minor annoyances.


Gaitline Floar Lther

Created by a former Norwegian National Ballet dancer and Olympic coach, Håvard Engell, the sole of this street shoe is designed to encourage proper weight distribution, improving your gait and alignment. $199, gaitline.com.

PerfectFit Inserts Kit

Find a more precise fit inside your pointe shoes by molding this silicone material to your foot's unique shape. $42, perfectfitpointe.com.

Apolla Alpha Shocks

These socks offer targeted support by integrating the latest sports science insights on compression with the unique needs of dancers. $30–$32, apollaperformance.com.

Rollga Hand and Foot Therapy Kit

Want to roll out your feet with something a bit more gentle than a lacrosse ball? These soft options are made with EVA foam. $5, rollga.com.

Gaynor Minden Dancers' Dots

Made with hydrogel, which consists almost entirely of water, these cushions provide cooling relief and protection for any hot spots prone to blisters. $7.99–$23.99, dancer.com.

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Luke Isley, Courtesy Ballet West

How Do Choreographers Bring Something Fresh to Music We've Heard Over and Over?

In 2007, Oregon Ballet Theatre asked Nicolo Fonte to choreograph a ballet to Maurice Ravel's Boléro. "I said, 'No way. I'm not going near it,' " recalls Fonte. "I don't want to compete with the Béjart version, ice skaters or the movie 10. No, no, no!"

But Fonte's husband encouraged him to "just listen and get a visceral reaction." He did. And Bolero turned into one of Fonte's most requested and successful ballets.

Not all dance renditions of similar warhorse scores have worked out so well. Yet the irresistible siren song of pieces like Stravinsky's The Firebird and The Rite of Spring, as well as the perennial Carmina Burana by Carl Orff, seem too magnetic for choreographers to ignore.

And there are reasons for their popularity. Some were commissioned specifically for dance: Rite and Firebird for Diaghilev's Ballets Russes; Boléro for dance diva Ida Rubinstein's post–Ballets Russes troupe. Hypnotic rhythms (Arvo Pärt's Spiegel im Spiegel) and danceable melodies (Bizet's Carmen) make a case for physical eye candy. Audience familiarity can also help box office receipts. Still, many choreographers have been sabotaged by the formidable nature and Muzak-y overuse of these iconic compositions.

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