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Irina Kolpakova in the studio with Katherine Williams. Photo by Quinn Wharton for Pointe

Being coached by a treasure like former Kirov prima Irina Kolpakova is an experience most dancers only dream of. But company members at American Ballet Theatre have been the lucky beneficiaries of her wisdom since 1990. Thanks to Instagram, where pros like Gillian Murphy and James Whiteside share snippets of their sessions with Kolpakova, any ballet lover can be a fly on the wall during rehearsals with the famed ballet mistress.

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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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Just for fun

What's been going on in the wonderful world of the Cindies (a.k.a. American Ballet Theatre principals James Whiteside and Isabella Boylston)? Just a casual visit at the ABT studios from actress Jennifer Garner, of course.

Judging from both Boylston's and Whiteside's Instagram accounts, Garner dropped by ABT's company class this week while in New York City promoting her new movie, Peppermint. And this means two major things: Garner has officially earned her Cindy title—at least according to Boylston's Instagram caption, which is about as official as it gets. And, perhaps even more importantly, this picture of the Cindies together means we can finally stop photoshopping Garnerhotoshopping Garner onto photos of the dancers (you're welcome).

While we hope there's more Cindy content on the way, we needed to take a minute to give Garner's tendu the recognition it deserves.

Just for fun
Lauren Post unwinds by sewing pointe shoes in the tub. Photo via Instagram/@laurencpost

Let's face it. Dancers just do things differently. We can never walk down a grocery aisle—we have to tap. We can never simply pick something up we've dropped—without going into a penché. But it's not a bad thing. We love all the ways that dance bleeds into our daily lives.

Turns out the pros aren't ever really off-duty either. Here's how we caught them dancing through their downtime.

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Just for fun
Lauren Post unwinds by sewing pointe shoes in the tub. Photo via Instagram/@laurencpost

Let's face it. Dancers just do things differently. We can never walk down a grocery aisle—we have to tap. We can never simply pick something up we've dropped—without going into a penché. But it's not a bad thing. We love all the ways that dance bleeds into our daily lives.

Turns out the pros aren't ever really off-duty either. Here's how we caught them dancing through their downtime.

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@jamesbwhiteside
Who: American Ballet Theatre
principal James Whiteside
Followers: 96.6K
What you'll see: a lot of muscles and humor, with a healthy dose of cat photos
What may surprise you: Whiteside moonlights as the drag queen Ühu Betch and pop singer JbDubs.

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Happy Halloween, DT readers! Every year, as the spookiest of holidays rolls around, I’m impressed with the humor and creativity of dancers’ Halloween costumes. This year was no exception. Enjoy a roundup of some of our favorite 2016 Halloween looks.

  1. Divas to the dance floor please! ABT principals Isabella Boylston and James Whiteside had a diva dance-off in company class as Sylvie Guillem and Natalia Makarova.

  1. ABT royalty Sascha Radetsky and Stella Abrera enchant and amuse as John Lennon and Yoko Ono. Can you imagine?

  1. Watch out for the Suicide Squad! “Dancing with the Stars” pros Maksim Chmerkovskiy and Peta Murgatroyd are terrifying as the Joker and Harley Quinn.

  1. Houston Ballet’s Harper Watters goes for the gold as dynamite gymnast Simone Biles. We also love Rhys Kosakowski’s take on The Sims.

  1. Dressed as company alum Ethan Stiefel, ABT soloist Cassandra Trenary impresses with a Center Stage moment—one-upping Charlie with a double tour.

Have a happy Halloween, and don’t miss a single issue of Dance Teacher.

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