Dance Media Live

Introducing Dance Media Live!: The Ultimate Live Class Series to Get You Through Quarantine

Lana Kozol, Courtesy Ballet 5:8

Since the dance world changed overnight due to COVID-19, we've been bringing you constant content on how our community is adapting to the pandemic—from following dancers who are #SocialDisDancing to asking the experts for tips on taking class at home.

Now, we're launching Dance Media Live!, a class series with everything from ballet to Pilates to cardio to jazz, featuring some of our favorite teachers.

So join us on Zoom, Tuesdays and Thursdays from 1-2 pm ET, beginning May 7. Classes are $10 each.

Sign up here, and see the full class schedule below:


Past classes:

July 23: Flexibility Training with the Flexistretcher

Joseph Miller, Courtesy Flexistretcher

Join Rein Short for a 60-minute stretch and strength class specifically designed to address the needs of the dancer using the Flexistretcher tool.

Sign up now.

July 21: Advanced Ballet with Christopher Hird

Frank Atura, courtesy Sarasota Ballet

Join the Sarasota Ballet's director of education, Christopher Hird, for an advanced ballet class focused on artistry.

Sign up now.

July 16: Ballet with Julianna Rubio Slager

Lana Kozol, Courtesy Ballet 5:8

Ballet 5:8 artistic director Julianna Rubio Slager will teach a ballet technique class with a focus on what she calls "the secrets to standout musicality."

Sign up here.

July 14: Advanced Ballet with Nick Mullikin

Courtesy Nashville Ballet

Join Nashville Ballet associate artistic director Nick Mullikin for an advanced ballet class and Q&A about the company.

Sign up here.

July 9: Advanced Contemporary/Modern with Erin Thompson

Randy Karels, courtesy Erin Thompson

Bessie award-winning dancer Erin Thompson will teach an advanced contemporary/modern class including floorwork, standing warm-ups and phrase work—all redesigned for the home space.

Sign up here.

July 2: Advanced Hip Hop with Dance Labs

Misty Matthews, Courtesy Dance Labs

Join Dance Labs faculty member Mckinley Hawkes for a high-energy advanced hip hop class. The class will include a warm up and a fun, musical combination.

Sign up here.

June 30: Technique and Conditioning with Alyssa Beasley

Chasity Strickland/YOUnique Photography, Courtesy Beasley

Join Alyssa Beasley, regional director of Fusion National Dance Competition, for a technique-inspired conditioning and stretching class.

Sign up here.

June 18: Movement as Medicine with Erica Hornthal

Mindy Garfinkle Photography

Erica Hornthal, dance/movement therapist and professional counselor, will lead a guided movement meditation designed to reduce stress and prioritize self care.

Sign up here.

June 16: Advanced Ballet and Q&A with José Carayol

Bradford Rogne, Courtesy Joffrey Academy of Dance

Join José Carayol, head of the Joffrey Academy of Dance's studio company and trainee program, for an advanced ballet class and Q&A.

Sign up here.

June 11: Improv Flow with Savea Kagan

Ginger Sole Photography, Courtesy Kagan

Degas Dance Studio faculty member Savea Kagan will teach an improv flow class, a guided exploration that encourages dancers to take risks, let go, and get out of their habitual ways of moving.

Sign up here.

June 4: Contemporary Jazz with Natalie Stys

En Lin, Courtesy Stys

Natalie Stys, a New York City-based dancer and choreographer, will teach a contemporary jazz class designed to push students to cultivate their artistic voice. Class will include a conditioning-focused warm-up, guided improvisations and a combination with influences from hip hop, jazz, ballet and theater.

Sign up here.

June 2: Ballet with Timour Bourtasenkov

Courtesy Cary Ballet Conservatory

Join Cary Ballet Conservatory faculty member and Youth America Grand Prix judge Timour Bourtasenkov for an advanced/pre-professional level ballet class.

Sign up here.

May 28: Intermediate Pilates Mat with Elizabeth Lowe Ahearn

Rob Ferrell, Courtesy Goucher

Elizabeth Lowe Ahearn, dance professor and founding director of the Pilates Center at Goucher College, will teach a Classical Pilates mat class designed to improve stretch, strength and control.

Sign up here.

May 26: Intermediate Contemporary with Melissa Rector

Sammi Pfieffer, Courtesy Koresh

Join Melissa Rector, assistant artistic director of Koresh Dance Company, for an intermediate contemporary class focused on groundedness, breath, body percussion, stylized gesture and quick transitions.

Sign up here.

May 21: Ballet with Philip Neal

Mike Munhall, Courtesy Patel Conservatory

Join Philip Neal, artistic director of Next Generation Ballet, for a ballet class focused on barre work. The former New York City Ballet dancer will focus on lightness and speed.

Sign up here.

May 19: Jazz and Q&A with Courtney Ortiz

Corey Rives, Courtesy Revel Dance Convention

Courtney Ortiz, owner of Impact Dance Adjudicators and a professional dancer, teacher and competition judge, will teach a jazz class designed for small spaces geared towards intermediate/advanced dancers and teachers. The class will be followed by a Q&A session with Ortiz, where participants can ask her advice on a professional dance career.

Sign up here.

May 14: The Dancer's Workout

Kathy Howard Portrait, Courtesy The Dancer's Workout

Join Jules Szabo, founder of The Dancer's Workout, for a dance fitness class targeted to dancers and incorporating ballet, jazz and contemporary dance.

Sign up here.

May 12: Cardio with Jaclyn Baker

Courtesy Baker

Professional dancer-turned-bodybuilder and International Federation of Bodybuilding and Fitness Olympian Jaclyn Baker will lead a 30-minute cardio sweat session, focused on increasing stamina. Suitable for all fitness levels and ages.

Sign up here.

May 7: Improving Grand Allegro with Hiroto Saito

Courtesy Canada's Ballet Jörgen

Join Ballet Jörgen ballet master Hiroto Saito for a ballet barre designed to support your jumps—including a special strength-training session to help you build jumping power when you're not able to jump at home.

Music
Getty Images

Securing the correct music licensing for your studio is an important step in creating a financially sound business. "Music licensing is something studio owners seem to either embrace or ignore completely," says Clint Salter, CEO and founder of the Dance Studio Owners Association. While it may seem like it's a situation in which it's easier to ask for forgiveness rather than permission—that is, to wait until you're approached by a music-rights organization before purchasing a license—Salter disagrees, citing Peloton, the exercise company that produces streaming at-home workouts. In February, Peloton settled a music-licensing suit with the National Music Publishers' Association out-of-court for an undisclosed amount. Originally, NMPA had sought $300 million in damages from Peloton. "It can get extremely expensive," says Salter. "It's not worth it for a studio to get caught up in that."

As you continue to explore a hybrid online/in-person version of your class schedule, it's crucial that your music licenses include coverage for livestreamed instruction—which comes with its own particular requirements. Here are some answers to frequently asked questions about music licensing—in both normal times and COVID times—as well as some safe music bets that won't pose any issues.

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A 2019 Dancewave training. Photo by Effy Grey, courtesy Dancewave

By now, most dance educators hopefully understand that they have a responsibility to address racism in the studio. But knowing that you need to be actively cultivating racial equity isn't the same thing as knowing how to do so.

Of course, there's no easy answer, and no perfect approach. As social justice advocate David King emphasized at a recent interactive webinar, "Cultivating Racial Equity in the Classroom," this work is never-ending. The event, hosted by Dancewave (which just launched a new racial-equity curriculum) was a good starting point, though, and offered some helpful takeaways for dance educators committed to racial justice.

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The author, Robyn Watson. Photo courtesy Watson

Recently, I posted a thread of tweets elucidating the lack of respect for tap dance in college dance programs, and arguing that it should be a requirement for dance majors.

According to onstageblog.com, out of the 30 top-ranked college dance programs in the U.S., tap dance is offered at 19 of them, but only one school requires majors to take more than a beginner course—Oklahoma City University. Many prestigious dance programs, like the ones at NYU Tisch School of the Arts and SUNY Purchase, don't offer a single course in tap dance.

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