On Tendus

Social Media Reacts to Misty Copeland’s Promotion To Principal at ABT

Posted by on 07.01.2015

Social Media Reacts to Misty Copeland’s Promotion To Principal at ABT

As you probably already know, yesterday American Ballet Theatre announced promotions for their upcoming season and with it came news that Misty Copeland will be ABT’s first African American Principal Dancer.  (Congrats Misty!) Normally news of promotions is huge in the ballet community, but this promotion was different.  Social Media was a buzz yesterday.  Have a look at the news by the numbers: __________________________________________ On June 30th, 2015, “Misty Copeland” was tweeted about over 25,000 times and the term ballet was found in over 27,000 tweets.  (Data courtesy of topsy.com.) In terms of Social Media, it’s not just the...

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Incorporating History into Dance Education

Posted by on 06.25.2015

Incorporating History into Dance Education

One of the great things about summer layoff, is that I have the wonderful opportunity to teach and coach the next generation of dancers.  Yesterday I sat down with my students and asked them if they had done the homework I had assigned to them on Monday.  A few hands shot up in the air with excitement.  “OK,” I told them, “Let’s talk about George Balanchine.” We started with his birth in 1904 in St. Petersburg, Russia and his death in New York in 1983 at age 79.  I asked them why they thought I had them research George Balanchine. That elicited some quick responses: “Because you want us to understand his style,” and “You wanted us to look up...

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The Injured Dancer: Expectations v. Reality

Posted by on 06.01.2015

The Injured Dancer: Expectations v. Reality

A few weeks ago I introduced my readers to the injury I am currently recovering from.  My hope was to offer readers an insight into a very real part of the professional dance world that is not often discussed.  In sports you may see injuries multiple times in a game, by why isn’t it the same when you go to the ballet? It is a sport after all.  Well, the answer is simple.  We can’t show you our pain.  So I decided to show it here. Today was the first official day of Miami City Ballet’s 2015-2016 season.  Due to studio availability, we often work for a short stint in June where we focus on learning new choreography for the upcoming season. This...

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The Injured Dancer

Posted by on 05.06.2015

The Injured Dancer

The ballet stage has a way of creating a fantasy world of perfection:  beautiful men and women adorned in glistening costumes dancing together in perfect unison.  Off-stage it’s a whole different story.  Not only is the road to the illusion of perfection a difficult one, but often comes with setbacks.  This is a story that is often discussed in dance circles, but rarely laid out for the audience: The injured dancer. With only two weekends of performances left in the season, at 5pm on an April afternoon in a rehearsal for the following day’s performance, vacation came early for me.  Amazingly in the moment when a dancer gets injured, the pain is not...

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Through a Social Media Movement, the ‘Bald Ballerina’ Raises Awareness of Breast Cancer in Young Women

Posted by on 07.27.2014

Through a Social Media Movement, the ‘Bald Ballerina’ Raises Awareness of Breast Cancer in Young Women

Meet Maggie Kudirka.  Some of you may know her from the Social Media movement, Bald Ballerina.  Maggie is a 23 year old ballet dancer, who was diagnosed with stage 4 breast cancer 2 months ago.  If you have not seen her Facebook page, or don’t yet follow her on Instagram/Twitter (@BaldBallerina), you really should.  You will immediately recognize a strong woman with an amazing spirit about her.  She has quickly decided to turn her journey into something to help others by raising awareness “that anyone can get breast cancer, even a healthy and fit ballet dancer.” This is a story you will want to share with everyone you know.  Maggie, we wish you...

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Summer Teaching Diaries: Fostering Young Dancers’ Love for Ballet

Posted by on 07.22.2014

Summer Teaching Diaries: Fostering Young Dancers’ Love for Ballet

Dancers all know that more work is put in offstage than onstage.  The same goes for young people studying ballet.  Though they may not be assigned “homework” as they are in school, education outside the studio is just as important as the education they are receiving at the barre. There are many small dance studios across the country and around the world. Not every aspiring dancer has the great fortune of attending a professional school where the tradition of ballet surrounds them day in and day out. Not every student has access to professional quality performances, showcasing generations of beloved productions. However, in today’s high-tech society,...

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