Dance212: Spring Session

Episode 15: Simone's forté is street jazz—which is what we get to see today! She's funky, sharp and fluid, and she gets to really shake it during Kelsey Fuhrman's BDC class.

 

Episode 14: Daphne's performance weekend is here, and we see clips from opening night. Even though it looks great, Daphne leaves the night feeling there's room for improvement.

 

Episode 13: Victoria takes partnering class. Do you have any girls in class who depend soley on the boys for balance? Show them this episode: Victoria talks at length about the strength it takes to pas de deux to perfection.

 

Episode 12: Today at BDC, Simone takes ballet class with Beth Goheen. Advice for teachers: Watch your students practice petit allegro combinations from the side for an interesting/revealing view.

 

Episode 11: Peek inside Kay Mazzo's ballet class at SAB. Though it's Ashley's dream to dance with NYCB, she has a list of other companies on her mind. And once again, she shows us her petit allegro strength—I don't know how her long legs carry her that quickly!

 

Episode 10: Daphne rehearses for a student choreography performance. It's a cool contemporary piece—you can really see the versatility of Daphne's dancing. The choreographer also takes note of Daphne's discipline—she shows up to rehearsals early and is extremely cooperative.

 

Episode 9: Holy pointe work, Catherine! This week, the ABT JKO student rehearses Flames of Paris for an ABT Studio Company exchange with The Royal Ballet School. Traveling is something that Catherine loves, and is looking forward to touring London when she's there. Click here to watch!

 

Episode 8: Today, Simone introduces her most influential dance teacher—her mother. Then, we get a glimpse into Nicholas Young's body percussion class. A member of the Off-Broadway show, "Stomp," Young introduces new and challenging rhythms to the Broadway Dance Center class. Simone gives it her all, but can't help but cracking up at her own mistakes.

 

Click here to watch episode 7: Hop on the subway with Victoria as she goes through her day from Long Island to Manhattan where she attends the Professional Children's School and The School at Steps. We also peek in on her pointe class with Leslie Browne, which Victoria loves because it directly follows ballet technique class. They're already warm and can apply the corrections to her pointe work.

 

Episode 6: Daphne takes ballet class with Jenny Chiang at The Ailey School. Even though she's in a modern program, ballet classes are a huge part of her schedule, and Daphne is grateful. Click here to watch!

 

Click here to watch episode 5:  Meet Ashley, a 16-year-old student at The School of American Ballet. Watch this leggy brunette master some tricky petit allegro combinations (and a neat start to a center adage combo) given by the one and only, Suki Schorer. Like Ashley says, Suki can fit almost the entire ballet vocabulary in one class—and NYCB principal Tiler Peck agrees. Read about Suki's legacy at SAB here, in our cover story about her amazing 40-year anniversary with the school.

 

Episode 4: Is it time to go home? Cause this girl's penché says it's 6-o-clock! In episode four of Dance212: Spring Season, we meet Victoria Grempel, a senior at the Professional Children's School and ballet student at The School of Steps. We see Victoria in class with former ABT principal Leslie Browne and learn that she has her sights set on college. Wonder what this season will bring her! Click here to watch!

 

Episode 3! "I love dance because of the way it makes me feel," says Catherine Hurlin. "It's extraordinary. It makes me feel like i'm home, and I could do it forever. It just feels right."In episode 2, we meet Catherine, a student at American Ballet Theatre's Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis School, who also takes class with and performs with ABT's Studio Company. Here, watch her in Franco De Vita's class. Spoiler alert—amazing close-up on some degagés!

 

Click here to watch episode 2: "I enjoyed dance, and wanted to do it in college, definitely. But I didn’t want to necessarily make it my career," says Daphne Lee, reflecting on her decision to attend the Ailey/Fordham B.F.A program. But something clicked during the audition, and Daphne discovered she wanted dance more than she knew. "I just realized, I really wanted to go for this. And from there, I had a new mentality. I could see myself doing it everyday." Now a junior at the school, Daphne has taken her potential to its fullest, and on top of her school work, is an apprentice with Ailey II. In her first episode, you watch her in Horton class with Ana Marie Forsythe.

 

Click here to watch episode 1: Simone, a dancer from Massachussetts is training at Broadway Dance Center. In the first episode, you'll see this funky jazz dancer in Michelle Barber's jazz class. (Barber is also Simone's mentor for the program.) Simone, 20, has had a varied training so far in both the US and Europe—she and her family lived overseas for nine years. Now back in the States, Simone is ready to shine, and has moved to NYC to make her dreams happen.

 

The sixth season of the web reality series, Dance212 is back! Watch the preview, here. Catch five NYC dancers, studying at Broadway Dance Center, The School of American Ballet, Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis School at American Ballet Theatre, The School at Steps on Broadway and the Ailey/Fordham B.F.A. program, as they navigate their spring semesters. Watch as they take class, audition for colleges and rehearse for end of the year workshops. Episodes air daily; and every Friday your students can enter a trivia contest to win cool prizes. Visit www.dance212.com to meet the dancers and learn more.

Music
Mary Malleney, courtesy Osato

In most classes, dancers are encouraged to count the music, and dance with it—emphasizing accents and letting the rhythm of a song guide them.

But Marissa Osato likes to give her students an unexpected challenge: to resist hitting the beats.

In her contemporary class at EDGE Performing Arts Center in Los Angeles (which is now closed, until they find a new space), she would often play heavy trap music. She'd encourage her students to find the contrast by moving in slow, fluid, circular patterns, daring them to explore the unobvious interpretation of the steady rhythms.

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For Parents

Darrell Grand Moultrie teaches at a past Jacob's Pillow summer intensive. Photo Christopher Duggan, courtesy Jacob's Pillow

In the past 10 months, we've grown accustomed to helping our dancers navigate virtual school, classes and performances. And while brighter, more in-person days may be around the corner—or at least on the horizon—parents may be facing yet another hurdle to help our dancers through: virtual summer-intensive auditions.

In 2020, we learned that there are some unique advantages of virtual summer programs: the lack of travel (and therefore the reduced cost) and the increased access to classes led by top artists and teachers among them. And while summer 2021 may end up looking more familiar with in-person intensives, audition season will likely remain remote and over Zoom.

Of course, summer 2021 may not be back to in-person, and that uncertainty can be a hard pill to swallow. Here, Kate Linsley, a mom and academy principal of Nashville Ballet, as well as "J.R." Glover, The Dan & Carole Burack Director of The School at Jacob's Pillow, share their advice for this complicated process.

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Teachers Trending

From left: Anthony Crickmay, Courtesy Dance Theatre of Harlem Archives; Courtesy Ballethnic

It is the urgency of going in a week or two before opening night that Lydia Abarca Mitchell loves most about coaching. But in her role as Ballethnic Dance Company's rehearsal director, she's not just getting the troupe ready for the stage. Abarca Mitchell—no relation to Arthur Mitchell—was Mitchell's first prima ballerina when he founded Dance Theatre of Harlem with Karel Shook; through her coaching, Abarca Mitchell works to pass her mentor's legacy to the next generation.

"She has the same sensibility" as Arthur Mitchell, says Ballethnic co-artistic director Nena Gilreath. "She's very direct, all about the mission and the excellence, but very caring."

Ballethnic is based in East Point, a suburban city bordering Atlanta. In a metropolitan area with a history of racism and where funding is hard-won, it is crucial for the Black-led ballet company to present polished, professional productions. "Ms. Lydia" provides the "hard last eye" before the curtain opens in front of an audience.

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