Tag Archive: new york times


Hello, terrestrial dancers! Even for the most ground-bound among us, it’s difficult not to wonder about gravity-defying aerial work, and Daniel Krieger is hardly an exception.

“After dancing on land and in the water,” Krieger writes (I want to hear more about that water business), “I was naturally ready for the next element. So I tried it in the air, which turned out to be no easy feat.”

True that.

The New York Times recently ran a sweet little piece about Krieger’s aerial adventures, something that many a floor-lover might be curious about. For anyone who’s tried it, it’s exhausting and fantastically playful, as Krieger discovers with help from Heather Hammond at Hype Gym in Manhattan. Read more here.

If you’re interested in taking classes in the Vegas area, Fern Adair Conservatory of the Arts is a great place to start. They offer classes in silks and lyra, a suspended metal hoop. Find the aerial schedule here.

And finally, to read about my own exploits in the air, find posts about my introduction to silks, an update after several months of classes, and this crazy thing called antigravity yoga, offered at Shine Alternative Fitness in Las Vegas.

Happy hanging!

What would you do for tuition money? A Penn State student cruises around New York subways with a pair of tap shoes and makes more money than at his job near the university. Dance pays, ladies and gents! Check out the short video from the New York Times here. The full story is available here.

Any thoughts on what kind of shoes he’s sporting? The video shows Bloch taps. If you have an idea, feel free to share below!

New York City Ballet alluded to the unseasonably toasty season in a sunny program choreographed entirely by Jerome Robbins. Decked out in simple costumes reminiscent of sandy shores and bygone days, dancers embodied Robbins’ familiar motif of fanciful youth.

The show included “In G Major,” “In Memory Of … ” and “The Concert.” Brian Seibert wrote a great review of the show for the New York Times, available here. If you’re just in the mood for eye candy, click here for the multimedia slideshow. Whether you’re shivering through the drafty season or basking in winter warmth, both are worth a look.

“So You Think You Can Dance,” the hugely popular, “American Idol”-style reality show on Fox, has garnered some serious attention in its eight-year tenure. Dancers of many creeds have strutted their stuff in front of a varying panel of judges in an attempt to be christened America’s favorite.

The show, now in its eighth season, begins with a lengthy audition process in select cities across the country. Dancers show up in droves for day-long auditions and a lucky few are sent through to Las Vegas for the next round of cuts. They then compete for a spot in the Top 20 and, once those 10 girls and 10 guys are chosen, the serious competition begins. Ultimately, one dancer is chosen by viewers as America’s Favorite Dancer. (Cue up the video below for a taste of what this season’s Top 20 can do.)

Like the “Twilight” series, Lady Gaga and fanny packs, this amount of attention naturally brings along differing points of view on the show itself. “So You Think You Can Dance” has been a big component in making dance more accessible to an audience that might not otherwise be interested. However, some dancers have voiced the concern that this shiny, commercial version might be alienating styles like classical ballet or modern dance.

Tiler Peck, the principal for New York City Ballet, chimed in on the issue alongside Michelle Dorrance of “Stomp,” Dallas McMurray of the Mark Morris Dance Group, hip-hoper Anthony “Ant Boogie” Rue II, who toured with Madonna, and Brittany Marcin, a former Rockette. For these four, dance is a business. To read their insight regarding SYTYCD, follow the link here for the original story from the New York Times.

The season finale is on Fox today at 8 p.m. EST. Regardless of your stance on “So You Think You Can Dance,” most dancers find it at least somewhat entertaining … even if, like Olympic figure skating, you’re only watching it for the falls.

For dancers, summers don’t always mean sleeping in, laying out by the pool and staying far away from school. In fact, many spend hours a day in classes, and lounging in bed is made difficult by early mornings in dance studios. Summer intensives are known as such for a reason; those who have attended tend to remember them with a combination of a smile and a grimace.

Intensives usually stretch from one week to a couple months and the programs often have kids in dance classes for six or seven hours a day. The experience acts as a rite of passage for many, and not just from a training perspective. Students are usually between the ages of 12 and 18 or 20 or so, and summer intensives provide a structured way for young adults to be away from their parents.

These can also act as extended auditions. Ballet and modern schools often use the time to observe dancers in a close and consistent environment, evaluating whether each student would be a valuable addition to a training program or second company.

The non-intensive type of audition is another summer staple, with dancers flocking to impress directors of prominent companies. These can be international affairs and, for some companies, the idea of auditioning for them is brand-new. The Bolshoi, for instance, held their first open audition happened recently.

The New York Times recently ran an excellent feature on dancers completing summer intensives in New York City. The Moscow News also detailed the first open audition held at the Bolshoi, ever. Both happen during the summer and both represent important rituals in the dance world, whose memories tend to eclipse lazy afternoons on a beach.

Long hair has been associated with such values as femininity and virtue for literary centuries. For dancers, though, hairstyles often carry more weight than just a headful of hairpins: appearances tend to be intricately tied to many dancers’ self-identity, so one dancer’s ‘do can be another dancer’s don’t. Couple this with the need to fit into a corps de ballet, to make a strong impression at an audition or to obtain approval from a company director, hair becomes about much more than Dippity-Do.

Gia Kourlas with the New York Times examined the implications of hair-style choices made by principal ballerinas in high-flying ballet companies. Ballet emphasizes both conformity and exceptional appearances, so ballet’s first ladies face challenges that are much more personal than just bad hair days. Find more details about the “bob or bun” debate at the link here.

Are you a bob-head or a bunhead? Let me know in the comments below.

Hey folks! Think of this post as a reader’s digest of the dance world. I’ve aggregated a few stories that were fun or interesting, so peruse at your leisure and see what others in Danceland are up to.

Warm fuzzies from American Ballet Theater: a slew of proposals at ABT might be giving those fairytale romances some credence. Find the story on Artsbeat here.

Cirque is heading to the Big Apple: An analytical look at Cirque du Soleil’s past and future is available from Jason Zinoman. Find the story here, with continuations coming next week.

A fantastic story about where burlesque came from and where it’s going was recently published by the good folks at the Las Vegas Weekly. Follow the link here and be sure to check out the photos.

Remember site-specific choreography from the 1980s? It’s back! A story published in the Wall Street Journal detailed a piece performed by Shen Wei Dance Arts performers at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Find the story, accompanied by photos and video, here.

Hanging from the ceiling isn’t just for Cirque artists … another Wall Street Journal story covers LAVA, a dance and acrobatic troupe in Brooklyn. Check out the full text here.

Pardon the third WSJ story, but this one is bringing it full circle with a clip about the “battling burlesque shows” in Las Vegas. Get the scoop here, and thanks for stopping by!

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