Ballet Class Blogging: Recital Success!

My pre-show jitters were way off—my students performed more successfully onstage Saturday than they ever had in class. And to make things even better, there weren't any tiara mishaps or costume malfunctions. However, a few of my youngest girls had back-to-back routines, with roughly three minutes in between. I will say 6-year-olds with quick backstage costume changes are pretty funny. Unlike teens who are too shy to change in front of others, making any excuse to rush to the dressing rooms or bathrooms, my youngest dancers couldn't have cared less about modesty. But under pressure to change at lightspeed, they froze. I worked up a sweat as I pulled up tights, untied and tied shoes, and readied leotards, skirts and T-shirts—all the while my students just stood there, completely motionless. (Nevertheless, our costume changes were on time. But I learned that if possible, never have 6-year-olds do quick-changes backstage. It's too much work for the dresser!)


Clockwise from top left: Courtesy Ford Foundation; Christian Peacock; Nathan James, Courtesy Gibson; David Gonsier, courtesy Marshall; Bill Zemanek, courtesy King; Josefina Santos, courtesy Brown; Jayme Thornton; Ian Douglas, courtesy American Realness

Since 1954, the Dance Magazine Awards have celebrated the living legends of our field—from Martha Graham to Misty Copeland to Alvin Ailey to Gene Kelly.

This year is no different. But for the first time ever, the Dance Magazine Awards will be presented virtually—which is good news for aspiring dancers (and their teachers!) everywhere. (Plus, there's a special student rate of $25.)

The Dance Magazine Awards aren't just a celebration of the people who shape the dance field—they're a unique educational opportunity and a chance for dancers to see their idols up close.

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Leap! Executive Director Drew Vamosi (Courtesy Leap!)

Since its inaugural season in 2012, Leap! National Dance Competition has been all about the little things.

"I wanted to have a 'boutique' competition. One where we went out to only one city every weekend, so I could be there myself, and we could really get to know the teachers and watch their kids progress from year to year," says Leap! executive director Drew Vamosi. According to Vamosi, thoughtful details make all the difference, especially during a global pandemic that's thrown many dancers' typical comp-season schedules for a loop. That's why Leap! prides itself on features like its professional-quality set design, as well as its one-of-a-kind leaping competition, where dancers can show off their best tricks for special cash and merchandise prizes.

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Health & Body
Getty Images

The term "body shaming" might bring up memories of that instructor from your own training who made critical remarks about—or even poked and prodded—dancers' bodies.

Thankfully, we're (mostly) past the days when authority figures felt free to openly mock a dancer's appearance. But body shaming remains a toxic presence in the studio, says Dr. Nadine Kaslow, psychologist for Atlanta Ballet: "It's just more hidden and more subtle." Here's how to make sure your teaching isn't part of the problem.

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