Watch an Adorable 12-Year-Old Ryan Gosling Dance

Everyone loves Ryan Gosling in La La Land. His character is passionate about music, he falls for Emma Stone and he's sensitively torn between the musician's life of touring and staying in Hollywood with her. He even seamlessly slips into the dance numbers, helping La La Land win seven Golden Globe Awards including one for Gosling. And last week he was nominated for an Oscar.

But do we really think he's a dancer? For me, he did a good job as an amateur dancer (whereas his piano playing looked totally professional). But, he added the kind of touches where the dancing helps tell the story.

I didn't think of him as a fully trained dancer. But then I saw this clip of him as a 12-year old, posted by Huffington Post, and it changed my mind.

Wow, he's got the moves! As a competition kid growing up in Canada, he was the only boy in his local studio—nothing new there. But you can see that he's got the energy, the style, and that extra something that makes you keep watching. His face is so full of joy that it's hard to square with the quizzical deadpan he's cultivated as a movie star. And, well, maybe he's lost some of his dance chops since then—not unusual for a young man who got busy doing other things.

The BBC's Graham Norton Show found the clip and interviewed him about it—after speaking with a few other celebs, including Emma Stone. If you are one of the many who have a soft spot for Gosling, you'll love this.

Broadway
The "Merde" bag. Courtesy Scenery

Jennifer Kahn knew the theater industry could do better. As a professional stage manager for 17 years she worked on regional, off-Broadway and Broadway shows. Nearly each time a show closed, something unsettling happened: "I would watch them throw away our shows. All of the beautiful artwork by my friends in the paint shop would go in the trash." The elaborate backdrops? Gone.

But she had an idea: What if the material used in the backdrops and legs could be upcycled into something new? And what if theater lovers could literally keep a piece of a beloved show?

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Sponsored by Harlequin Floors
Left: Hurricane Harvey damage in Houston Ballet's Dance Lab; Courtesy Harlequin. Right: The Dance Lab pre-Harvey; Nic Lehoux, Courtesy Houston Ballet.

"The show must go on" may be a platitude we use to get through everything from costume malfunctions to stormy moods. But when it came to overcoming a literal hurricane, Houston Ballet was buoyed by this mantra to go from devastated to dancing in a matter of weeks—with the help of Harlequin Floors, Houston Ballet's longstanding partner who sprang into action to build new floors in record time.

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News
Photo by Gabriel Davalos, Courtesy Valdés

For decades the name Alicia Alonso has been virtually synonymous with Ballet Nacional de Cuba, the company she co-founded in Havana in 1948. Alonso died on October 17, just shy of what would have been her 99th birthday. In recent years, she had stepped back from day-to-day decision-making in the company. As if preparing for the future, in January, the company's leading ballerina, 42-year-old Viengsay Valdés, was named deputy director, a job that seems to encompass most of the responsibilities of a traditional director. Now, presumably, she will step into her new role as director of the company. Her debut as curator of the repertory comes in November, when the troupe will perform three mixed bills selected by her at the Gran Teatro de la Habana Alicia Alonso. The following has been translated from a conversation conducted in Spanish, Valdés' native tongue.

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Health & Body
Sara Mearns in the gym. Photo by Kyle Froman.

New York City Ballet principal Sara Mearns wasn't sure she was strong enough. A ballerina who has danced many demanding full-length and contemporary roles, she was about to push herself physically more than she thought was possible.

"I said, 'I can't. My body won't,' " she says. "He told me, 'Yes, it will.' "

She wasn't working with a ballet coach, but with personal trainer Joel Prouty, who was asking her to do squats with a heavier barbell than she'd ever used.

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