New Year's Resolutions From Our 2019 "25 to Watch"
By now, you've probably gotten to know our latest "25 to Watch" picks. We're expecting great things from them in the year to come, but what do they have in mind for 2019? For a little New Year's inspiration, we asked a few of them to share the resolutions they'll be carrying into next year.
He in Balanchine's Who Cares? Photo by Kim Kinney, Courtesy Atlanta Ballet
In the new year, I want to bring mindfulness into my everyday life and into the studio. I aim to work on being fully present in each moment and experience, aware of where I am and what I'm doing, and not overly reactive or overwhelmed by what's going on around me. I also resolve to be more courageous and confident, and to trust myself when it comes to things that may be out of my comfort zone.
Photo courtesy Denton
I view resolutions as guidelines rather than goals, so I tend to make them rather broad, but I do have two for 2019 that I think are relevant:
1. As part of my research I've started a new project looking at the formation of massive impact basins on solar system objects from the Moon to Pluto, and I want to use the unique physics observed in their formation as the basis for a new dance project thinking about fluidization of group movement as an exploration of turning geologic motion into physical motion.
2. To engage the planetary science community in a more humanistic approach to our future exploration goals and projects, including discussion of how to broaden artistic engagement as well as developing an inclusive feminist future for space exploration.
Bell in rehearsal. Photo by Rosalie O'Connor, Courtesy ABT
I feel like New Year's resolutions are pretty dicey. I mean, if there is something important that needs to be done, I've already done it, am in the process of doing it or I need to stop pretending like it's going to get done. So, I would say, the New Year is a good time to re-evaluate my priorities.
Troyak in Pina Bausch's The Seven Deadly Sins. Photo by Jochen Viehoff, Courtesy Troyak
1. One goal is to launch a YouTube channel series I've been working on with my boyfriend John. I get tons of questions on social media from aspiring dancers about what it's like living abroad, navigating Europe, company life, etc. It's been been a journey for me for sure! So we have started to build a channel to help dancers into this crazy industry (and to provide insight into us as a couple.) Look out for "In Bed with Steph & John" in the new year, where you can cuddle up in bed on your laptop and chat with us while we do the same!
2. Learn German—I know the basics, but I want to get more fluent.
3. Go to bed an hour earlier at night to get an extra hour in the morning. I'm the girl that wakes up and runs out the door, but I would so benefit from taking my time, planning the day and enjoying my morning coffee before leaving the house.
4. Finding consistency when I tour. When I travel, it's really hard to stick to my usual routine, but I'm looking to find more balance!
Gareiss in his Solo Square Dance. Photo by HR Photography, Courtesy Gareiss
I've resolved to keep a weekly public blog post as a means of sharing and archiving the cultural dance traditions I'm researching and creating with.
Morland in Rashaun Mitchell + Silas Riener's SWITCH. Photo by Paula Lobo, Courtesy Morland
From 2019 until forever, I will give time and love to the lifelong process of meeting myself in totality. I will trust that every moment past was the only way, but also reflect on and harvest something from these experiences. I will acknowledge the infinite beauty of everything!
Dolan as Dew Drop in Balanchine's The Nutcracker. Photo by Arian Molina Soca, Courtesy Pennsylvania Ballet
1. Better my dancing through all aspects of life, like other art forms, nature and the people around me, to give my dancing more depth and meaning.
2. Improve with positivity rather than negativity.
3. Make each performance better than the last.
4. Widen the variety of my cooking with new foods, spices and techniques.
5. Enjoy small things I often take for granted.
6. Approach every day with gratitude.
7. Always think about my posture!
8. Live every moment with friends, family and dancing to the fullest.
Photo by Tatiana Willis, Courtesy Taylor
My New Year's resolution is to find the joy in each season of my life—whether it is difficult or pleasant!
- Meet Dance Magazine's 25 To Watch In 2019 – ArtsJournal ›
- Dance Magazine's "25 to Watch" - Wikipedia ›
Last night, longtime theater legends (including Chita Rivera herself!) as well as rising stars gathered to celebrate one of Broadway's danciest events: the third annual Chita Rivera Awards.
The evening paid tribute to this season's dancer standouts, fabulous ensembles, and jaw-dropping choreography—on- and off-Broadway and on film.
As usual, several of our faves made it into the mix. (With such a fabulous talent pool of nominees to choose from, we're glad that ties were allowed.) Here are the highlights from the winner's list:
The way we create and consume dance is changing every day. Now more than ever, the field demands that dancers not only be able to perform at the highest level, but also collaborate with choreographers to bring their artistic visions to life. Dancers who miss out on choreographic training may very well find themselves at a disadvantage as they try to launch their careers.
When you're a foreign dancer, gaining legal rights to work in the U.S. is a challenging process. It's especially difficult if you're petitioning to work as a freelance dancer without an agent or company sponsorship.
The process requires professional muscle along with plenty of resources and heart. "There's a real misnomer that it's super easy," says Neena Dutta, immigration attorney and president of Dutta Law Firm. "People need to educate themselves and talk to a professional."
Here are four things every foreign dancer who wants to work in the U.S. needs to know to build a freelance dance career here.
What does it take to "make it" in dance? It's no secret that turning this passion into a profession can be a struggle. In such a competitive field, talent alone isn't enough to get you where you want to be.
So what kinds of steps can you take to become successful? Dance Magazine spoke to 33 people from all corners of the industry to get their advice on the lessons that could help us all, no matter where we are in our careers.
It's not often that a promising choreographer gets to stage work in a world-class theater, on a skillfully-curated program with professional dancers, and with the possibility of winning a substantial cash prize. But at the McCallum Theatre's Palm Desert Choreography Festival, that's been the status quo for over twenty years.
Since Shea New, the festival's artistic director, founded the festival in 1998, she's worked tirelessly with McCallum's director of education and festival producer, Kajsa Thuresson-Frary, and stage manager and festival production manager Joanna Fookes to build a festival that nurtures choreographers, highlights high quality work, powerfully engages the local community and cultivates an audience base for dance in the Coachella Valley. The trio is backed by a strong team of professionals at McCallum and the brilliant volunteers from the local and national level who serve as adjudicators.
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On May 18, 1919, Margot "Peggy" Hookham was born. She would grow up to become Dame Margot Fonteyn, England's first homegrown prima ballerina. She joined the Sadler's Wells School in 1934 and was performing principal roles with the precursor to The Royal Ballet the next year. Fonteyn was a company-defining figure, dancing Aurora for the re-opening of the Royal Opera House after World War II, creating numerous roles with Sir Frederick Ashton and forging a legendary partnership with Rudolf Nureyev.
Memorial Day is notoriously one of Chicago's bloodiest weekends. Last year, 36 people were shot and seven died that weekend. In 2017 and 2016, the number of shootings was even higher.
When Garley "GiGi Tonyé" Briggs, a dance teacher and Chicago native, started noticing this pattern, she was preparing her second annual Memorial Day workshop for local youth.
The event's original aim was simple: "I wanted the youth of Chicago to have somewhere they could come and learn from different dancers and be off the streets on the South Side on this hot holiday," she says.
A recent trip I took to Nashville coincided with the NFL draft. As we drove into town, my Uber driver was a fount of information on the subject.
I learned that there are 32 NFL teams and that the draft takes place over seven rounds. That the team that did the poorest during the previous season gets first pick. That during an earlier event called the scouting combine, the teams assess college football players and figure out who they want.
There is also the veteran combine for "free agents"—players who have been released from their contracts or whose contracts have expired. They might be very good players, but their team needs younger members or ones with a certain skill set. All year round, experienced NFL scouts scan games across the country, checking out players and feeding that information back to the teams. Players' agents keep their eyes on opportunities for their clients which might be more rewarding.
While I sat in the traffic of 600,000 NFL fans I got thinking, is there something ballet could learn from football? Could a draft system improve young dancers' prospects and overall company caliber and contentment?
Despite what you might think, there's no reason for dancers to be afraid of bread.
"It's looked at as this evil food," says New York State–certified dietitian and former dancer Tiffany Mendell. But the truth is, unless you have celiac disease or a gluten intolerance, bread can be a healthy source of carbohydrates—our body's preferred fuel—plus fiber and vitamins.
The key is choosing your loaf wisely.
It can be hard to imagine life without—or just after—dance. Perhaps that's why we find it so fascinating to hear what our favorite dancers think they'd be doing if they weren't performing for a living.
We've been asking stars about the alternate career they'd like to try in our "Spotlight" Q&A series, and their answers—from the unexpected to the predictable—do not disappoint:
"New York City Ballet star appears in a Keanu Reeves action movie" is not a sentence we ever thought we'd write. But moviegoers seeing John Wick: Chapter 3 – Parabellum will be treated to two scenes featuring soloist Unity Phelan dancing choreography by colleague Tiler Peck. The guns-blazing popcorn flick cast Phelan as a ballerina who also happens to be training to become an elite assassin. Opens in theaters May 17.
The Brooklyn-based choreographer Gillian Walsh is both obsessed with and deeply conflicted about dance. With her latest work, Fame Notions, May 17–19 at Performance Space New York, she seeks to understand what she calls the "fundamentally pessimistic or alienating pursuit" of being a dancer. Noting that the piece is "quiet and introverted," like much of her other work, she sees Fame Notions as one step in a larger project examining why dancers dance.
What does Mikhail Baryshnikov have to say to dancers starting their careers today? On Friday, he gave the keynote speech during the graduation ceremony for the inaugural class of the USC Glorya Kaufman School of Dance.
The heart of his message: Be generous.