No, you're not imagining it: Ballet is everywhere these days. In ads, in music videos and on TV. 

And with an increase in dance coverage hopefully comes an increase in dance knowledge. Just how did all these dancers actually become dancers? Even I, long past my eager pre-professional days at the barre, still find myself fascinated with how different students train around the world.

So is the staff over at Teen Vogue. Last year, the magazine debuted the first season of its web series "Strictly Ballet," which followed students during their final years at the School of American Ballet. This time around, we're getting a look at dancers of Miami City Ballet School. There's Mayumi Enokibara, who left Brazil in hopes of joining Miami City Ballet; Valeriia Chaykina, who left the Vaganova Academy in Russia with dreams of working in the U.S.; and Carlos Valdés, whose whole family moved to Miami from Cuba in support of his dancing. We watch a total of six students deal with injuries, the job hunt and the college versus company struggle. If you're a binge watcher like me, you're in luck. All of Season 2 is online.

 

And don't forget about Dance Magazine's new series that follows a professional dancer during a full day of work, from dawn to dusk. The first episode is with New York City freelancer Melissa Toogood. We'll be releasing new videos soon.

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Luc Delahaye, Courtesy Gordon & Setterfield

Dance Magazine Award Honorees: David Gordon & Valda Setterfield

How to frame two lifetimes of work as broad and vibrant as that of choreographer David Gordon and performer Valda Setterfield? When onstage together, an invisible tether connects them, whether they're kibitzing, chiding, flirting or embracing a sense of melancholy.

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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:

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Stella Abrera in Alexei Ratmansky's The Seasons. Rosalie O'Connor, Courtesy ABT.

Stella Abrera to Take on New Role as Artistic Director of Kaatsbaan

Yesterday, Kaatsbaan, the Tivoli, NY-based cultural park for dance, announced that Stella Abrera will join the organization as its new artistic director, effective January 1. This news come just weeks after we learned that Abrera will be taking her final bow with American Ballet Theatre in June.

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