736 pages, $32
Sam Wasson’s biography of dance legend Bob Fosse is the first to be written in 25 years, researched with unprecedented access to the Bob Fosse and Gwen Verdon Collection at the Library of Congress and supplemented by over 300 interviews with some of Fosse’s closest friends—and all contained within a hefty 736 pages. But with a past as colorful as that of the man who choreographed iconic shows Sweet Charity, Pippin and Chicago, how could it be anything less?
Wasson doesn’t cut corners when it comes to creating a three-dimensional portrait of Fosse, a man considered by most to be, by turns, a genius, workaholic, devoted father and insatiable ladies’ man. His description of the dance auditions for Pippin detail not only the tried-and-true advice whispered among the women to “tease [their] hair way up” and “use eyeliner” to attract his attention but also Fosse’s deep sincerity and regret when he needed to cut dancers—which he did one by one, with words of appreciation for their time and effort. It’s an unflinchingly honest book, and a choreographer as revered as Fosse deserves every page.
As the director of dance at Fred Astaire Dance Studio in Belmont, Massachusetts, Istvan Cserven organizes the biannual student showcases, prepares dancers for competition and trains new instructors. On top of all that, he teaches the upper-level technique classes. A former ballroom champion in Hungary, he is well-acquainted with both rhythm and smooth ballroom-dance styles.
In an event inspired by the words of President John F. Kennedy, The Washington Ballet will perform the world premier of WHO WHEN WHY this Saturday, June 24, at the Smithsonian American Art Museum's Kogod Courtyard.
After having spent a lifetime looking at ourselves in the mirror, constantly appraising, who of us wouldn't want to take a dance class in the dark? Two Australian dance students, Alice Glenn and Heidi Barrett, had the same thought in 2009 when they founded No Lights No Lycra, a global dance community that offers dancers and nondancers alike the chance to get their groove on in a dark space, where there's no light, no Lycra, no technique, no teacher and no steps to learn. It's just a place to lose yourself in the music and find your own dance mojo. The event became so popular that it spread past its Melbourne beginnings, first throughout Australia and now, globally.
Four incredible educators: Joanne Chapman, Claudio Muñoz, Pamela VanGilder and Kathleen Isaac foster their students' love of dance, whether instilling artistry, offering rigorous training or giving special needs students an outlet through movement.
When Jennie Somogyi retired from New York City Ballet, she found herself in high demand as a teacher. Parents called, texted and persisted. "I don't even know how some of them got my contact information," she says with a laugh. But Somogyi, who departed from NYCB in 2015 after a 22-year career, hadn't made any definitive plans for the next stage of her life. "I just like to see how things move me," she says. She discovered, though, that she enjoyed the process of giving private lessons and seeing the rapid progress students could make. Over time, she realized that teaching was something she wanted rather than needed.