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The Most Influential People in Dance Today

For Dance Magazine's 90th anniversary issue, we wanted to celebrate the movers, shakers and changemakers who are having the biggest impact on our field right now. There were so many to choose from! But with the help of dozens of writers, artists and administrators working in dance, the Dance Magazine staff whittled the list down to those we felt are making the most difference right now.

Click through the links below to find out why they made our list.


Michelle Dorrance

Benjamin Millepied

Katherine E. Brown

Sydney Skybetter

Marc Bamuthi Joseph

Liz Lerman

Monica Bill Barnes

Justin Peck

Linda Shelton

Alastair Macaulay

Ohad Naharin

Gilda Squire

Christy Bolingbroke

The Actors Fund

International Association for Dance Medicine & Science

Michael M. Kaiser

Misty Copeland

Maria Kochetkova

Lil Buck

Ryan Heffington

Robert Battle

Pamela Tatge

Lourdes Lopez

Andy Blankenbuehler

Alexei Ratmansky

Amy Fitterer

Gina Gibney

The Harkness Foundation for Dance

Joe Lanteri

Larissa Saveliev

Glorya Kaufman

Nico Muhly

Max Richter

Joby Talbot

Who did we miss? Send us your suggestions. We'll be publishing a Readers' Choice companion to this story.

The Conversation
Dance Training
Todd Rosenberg, Courtesy Hubbard Street Dance Chicago

Alexandra Wells can always tell when a dancer hasn't read her summer intensive information packet. Sometimes, says Hubbard Street Dance Chicago's director of artist training, there's a quick fix for the lack of preparation. "You can go and buy a long-sleeve shirt after you burn your shoulder really badly in that first floorwork class," she says. But not bringing enough of your special-order pointe shoes? "That's really dire."

Between reading the fine print, shopping for necessities and ramping up physically, getting ready for a summer intensive takes more than just dancing a lot. We broke down a step-by-step timeline:

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Advice for Dancers
Photo by Ali Müftüoğulları, Courtesy Unsplash

Whenever I'm cast in a solo role, I'm consumed with thoughts of everything that could go wrong. Please help.

—Isabella, Philadelphia, PA

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