Dance News
Carol Channing in the original 1964 production of Hello, Dolly! Photo by Eileen Darby, Courtesy DM Archives.

The inimitable Carol Channing, best known for her role as the titular Hello, Dolly!, passed away today at 97.

Though she became a three-time Tony winner, Channing was born in Seattle, far from the Great White Way, in 1921. After growing up in San Francisco, she attended the famed Bennington College, studying dance and drama. She later told the university, "What Bennington allows you to do is develop the thing you're going to do anyway, over everybody's dead body." For Channing, that meant decades of fiery, comical performances, bursting with energy.

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Dance News
Photo by Natalie Fiol, courtesy of University of Illinois Dept. of Dance

This academic year marks the 50th anniversary of the dance department at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

In 1959, when the dance program was part of physical education, its head Margaret Erlanger invited Merce Cunningham for a four-month residency—the first of its kind on a university campus. Since then, U of I has been known for its vibrant dance programs, faculty, facility and innovation in the field. There is much to celebrate.

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Dance News
USPS

Gregory Hines revolutionized the tap scene in the '80s and '90s with his incredibly charismatic, effortlessly virtuosic performances on Broadway and the big screen. Now, the trailblazing entertainer—who died in 2003—is being recognized by the US Postal Service with a commemorative stamp. And we are SO HERE FOR IT.

The stamp, which will debut January 28th, is part of the USPS's Black Heritage series, and features a classic Jack Mitchell portrait of Hines. If you're in the NYC area, stop by the day-of-issue event at Symphony Space on the 28th (it's free!). If you're not a New Yorker, no worries: The stamps will be available for purchase online and at local post offices.

While you're waiting to get your hands on those stamps, check out some of our favorite videos of Hines' fabulous feet:

Dance News
via @therealabbylee on Instagram

The year 2019 is already off to a dramatic start for dance fans, thanks to Abby Lee Miller's latest announcement. The infamously tough dance coach just let the world know that she'll begin filming Season 8 of the hit reality series "Dance Moms" at the end of January.

Her return to the show will come as a surprise to many, because Miller's been dealing with a myriad of personal challenges since quitting in 2017. Even though her battle with cancer is ongoing, it sounds like she's ready to dive back into the world of reality TV.

We're most curious to meet the next crop of talented dancers Miller will coach. The original "Dance Moms" cast members have distanced themselves from the reality mogul, but we're guessing there are plenty of gifted students ready to tackle the challenges that come with working with her.

Dance News
Photo credits, clockwise from bottom left: Peter Mueller, Courtesy Cincinnati Ballet; Jayme Thornton; Jochen Viehoff, Courtesy Stephanie Troyak; Karolina Kuras, Courtesy National Ballet of Canada; Natasha Razina, Courtesy State Academic Mariinsky Theatre; Kim Kenney, Courtesy Atlanta Ballet; Jim Lafferty; Arian Molina Soca, Courtesy Pennsylvania Ballet; Altin Kaftira, Courtesy Dutch National Ballet; Scott Shaw, Courtesy Shamar Wayne Watt

Every year we love to see Dance Magazine's coveted list of the dancers, choreographers and companies that are on the verge of skyrocketing in the field of dance. This year's picks are nothing short of exceptional.

Congratulations to these 25 up-and-coming artists!

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Dance News
Misty Copeland opened the 2018 Dance Magazine Awards. Photo by Christopher Duggan.

What does it mean to be human? Well, many things. But if you were at the Dance Magazine Awards last week, you could argue that to be human is to dance. Speeches about the powerful humanity of our art form were backed up with performances by incredible dancers hailing from everywhere from Hubbard Street Dance Chicago to Miami City Ballet.

Misty Copeland started off the celebration. A self-professed "Dance Magazine connoisseur from the age of 13," she not only spoke about how excited she was to be in a room full of dancers, but also—having just come from Dance Theatre of Harlem's memorial for Arthur Mitchell—what she saw as their duty: "We all in this room hold a responsibility to use this art for good," she said. "Dance unifies, so let's get to work."

That sentiment was repeated throughout the night.

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Dance News
Genshaft in Ratmansky's From Foreign Lands. Photo by Erik Tomasson, courtesy of San Francisco Ballet

Dana Genshaft was a beloved dancer in the San Francisco Ballet for 15 years, rising to the rank of soloist. Some of her SFB career highlights include performing lead roles in Frederick Ashton's Monotones I and Wayne McGregor's Eden/Eden and originating roles in Val Caniparoli's Ibsen's House and Mark Morris' Joyride, as well as working with Christopher Wheeldon and William Forsythe.

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Dance News

For the average person, the holidays in New York City are magical. For dancers, they are out of this world!!!!

To make sure you don't miss the dancey action, should you find yourself in the Big Apple this holiday season, here are three things you and your students simply HAVE to do!

You're welcome!!

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Dance News
Photo of the Woolsey fire via Instagram

A few days ago, a friend forwarded me the GoFundMe Campaign of Nikki and Ethan White, a dancerly wife and husband duo who escaped the California "Woolsey Fire" with their children but whose home burned to the ground. The couple had met while dancing for Smuin Ballet, and later were one of the top three finalists on Paula Abdul's TV show "Live to Dance." Today, they live in the Los Angeles area, where Ethan is researching how dance partnerships develop interpersonal trust at USC.

I spoke to Nikki about the fire, what comes next and how readers can help.

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Dance News
Ballet West in Waltz of the Flowers. Photo by Luke Isley, courtesy of Ballet West

Check out these old (and new) productions of ballet's beloved holiday classic.

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A still from the new documentary, DANSEUR. Image courtesy DANSEUR

According to the new documentary DANSEUR, 85% of males who study dance in the United States are bullied or harassed. A quote in the film from Dr. Doug Risner, faculty member at Wayne State University, states, "If this scope of bullying occurred in any activity other than dance, it would be considered a public health crisis by the CDC."

So why is it allowed to persist in ballet? And why aren't we talking about it more? These are the questions that DANSEUR seeks to answer. But primarily consisting of dance footage and interviews with male dancers like ABT's James Whiteside, Houston Ballet's Harper Watters and Boston Ballet's Derek Dunn, the film only addresses these issues superficially, with anecdotes about individual experiences and generalizations about what it's like to be a male dancer.

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Dance News
Calpulli Mexican Dance Company. Photo by Michael Palma, courtesy of Dance/NYC

What makes a dance performance "traditional," "cultural" or "ethnic"? What if that dance or dance style is so deeply intertwined within a family or community's life, they don't see it as a "dance," a "dance form" or even as "art"?

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Dance News
Ballet Hartford. Photo by Andy Hart, courtesy of 5x5

Sustaining a festival for 16 years strong is an achievement to honor and to celebrate. The 5x5 Dance Festival has become a bustling and full one-day event, this year taking place on Saturday, November 3. The festival has two large goals: to be multigenerational and to feature the vibrant dance taking place statewide in Connecticut.

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