American Ballet Theatre just announced its much-anticipated promotions, and artistic director Kevin McKenzie couldn't have picked more deserving dancers. Soloists Sarah Lane, Christine Shevchenko and Devon Teuscher have been promoted to principal, and Calvin Royal III has been promoted to soloist.


After 10 years as a soloist, Lane's promotion has been the longest time coming. Her loyal fans have been hoping for this day season after season, and after the phenomenal summer she's had—including her New York debut as Giselle and a surprise Odette/Odile debut—it makes sense that it's finally her time.

Shevchenko and Teuscher had their fair share of debuts this season, too—Shevchenko in Don Quixote and Le Corsaire, and Teuscher in Swan Lake. Both dancers have only been soloists since 2014, a rather short time to spend in the rank by ABT standards. We spotted both women as "On the Rise" back in their early days.

Royal caught our eye back in 2014 when we pegged him as a "25 to Watch," and his captivating lyricism and gravity have only grown since then, especially in the work of artist in residence Alexei Ratmansky.

All four dancers came up through the ABT ranks, a shift from previous years when international stars have dominated. With Russian primas Diana Vishneva and Veronika Part leaving the company after this season, the principal women will be more homegrown than ever.

Congrats, dancers!

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Courtesy Schelfhaudt

These Retired Ballroom Dancers Started a Dance-Themed Coffee Company

Like many dancers, when Lauren Schelfhaudt and Jean Paul retired from professional ballroom dancing in 2016, they felt lost. "There was this huge void," says Schelfhaudt.

But after over 20 years of dancing, plus United States and World Championship titles, reality shows, and high-profile choreography gigs (and Paul's special claim to fame, as "the guy who makes Bradley Cooper look bad" in Silver Linings Playbook), teaching just didn't fill the void. "I got to the point where it wasn't giving me that creative outlet," says Paul.

When the pair (who are life and business partners but were never dance partners—they competed against one another) took a post-retirement trip to Costa Rica, they were ready to restart their lives. They found inspiration in an expected place: A visit to a coffee farm.

Though they had no experience in coffee roasting or business, they began building their own coffee company. In 2018, the duo officially launched Dancing Ox Coffee Roasters, where they create dance-inspired blends out of their headquarters in Belmont, North Carolina.

We talked to Schelfhaudt and Paul about how their dance background makes them better coffee roasters, and why coffee is an art form all its own:

GO DEEPER