Ballet in the Mainstream

“Hiplet” Hits the Mainstream

Posted by on 05.31.2016

If you follow any social media related to ballet, or perhaps even just have a Facebook account, it is possible that over the past few weeks you have encountered a viral video coming out of the Chicago Multicultural Dance Center.  Through Instagram, Homer Hans Bryant chronicles his students’ training in a new form of dance he has created, “Hiplet,” a hybrid of ballet and hip hop (see video below). This morning Mr. Bryant brought some of his students to “Good Morning America” for a demonstration and discussion.   A video posted by @homerhansbryant on May 31, 2016 at 7:23am PDT     “Good Morning America”...

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New England Patriot Rob Gronkowski Gives Ballet a Try

Posted by on 05.17.2016

Ballet continues to make it’s way into the mainstream.  Today’s tidbit is brought to you by Miami City Ballet dancer Nathalia Arja, who caught up with NFL superstar, Rob Gronkowski of the New England Patriots when he was in Miami.  Ms. Arja gives his a little ballet tutorial then tests his skills at the end. Check out the adorable video below which hit GQ and The Scene today.  It’s harder than it looks, huh...

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Jon Taylor: Capturing Dance In Unexpected Places

Posted by on 05.16.2016

Last month while visiting New York City for Miami City Ballet’s spring tour, I received a Facebook message from a local dance photographer, Jon Taylor, asking if I would be interested in doing a photoshoot with him. By exploring his social media accounts, I discovered gorgeous photos of dancers surrounded by cityscapes and other outdoor venues. You may say, sure, but many photographers capture dancers in settings other than the stage. And to that I say, no one is doing it quite like Jon. The day we met for my shoot, we went in search of a backdrop by exploring a rather quiet part of town. It was fascinating to watch him scoping different locations. It wasn’t...

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

Posted by on 07.01.2015

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 In terms of Social Media, it’s not just the...

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Free People’s “Ballet” Campaign

Posted by on 05.19.2014

As many of you in the dance community have probably seen, the clothing company, Free People, has developed a ballet line.  But instead of considering the clothes, all we have been able to focus on for the last week are the photos and the videos published to promote the new line. The photos obviously indicate that the models had little to no ballet training, which is enough to upset professional dancers on it’s own.  Why would they choose to not use dancers when they likely had a large budget and could have done whenever they want?  As I monitored the social media response to these photos, my personal reaction was that there are a lot of similar ballet photos...

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‘Breaking Pointe’ Brings Something New to the Table in Episode Two: Reality

Posted by on 08.04.2013

After a disappointing season 2 premier of Breaking Pointe, the show redeemed itself quite a bit in episode two.  Yes we did look into some company relationships at the beginning and end of the episode, but the true focus this week was on rehearsals for Cinderella. About five minutes in, we hear Beckanne Sisk telling us how their day begins: “with a group class” before rehearsals.  We are treated to extensive class footage with Ballet West’s Director Adam Sklute giving corrections and encouraging his dancers.  This is a wonderful look into the way professional ballet dancers’ begin their day. And it is in fact, reality. Ian and Zac reveal the...

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