Time Out for Dance

There is a small electronics store inside the Times Square subway station here in New York City that has a TV in the window. This may sound hard to believe, but the TV usually features footage of ballroom dance competitions to attract visitors—and it seems to be working out quite well.
    It goes without saying that New York is one of the busiest cities in the world—people are often in a rush for no other reason than to get from point A to point B. So it never ceases to amaze me just how many New Yorkers stop to watch dance on this TV—in Times Square of all places, certainly one of the busier spots in the Big Apple.
    Of course, live dance always draws a crowd, too. I’ve seen some amazing break dancers, tappers and dance battles on the streets of this city. If you live in a major city, try to appreciate just how much dance you see around you all the time. And if you don’t, dance is still in so many places: on TV, online and in ads. Have you seen the Nissan commercial where cars are dance battling? Or how about Target’s back-to-school ad that showed two college roommates dancing as they decorated their dorm? Dance is everywhere!

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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