Blogs

The best "Bunheads" episodes—at least from the perspective of us bunheads—are the ones that involve lots of dancing. And the series' Nutcracker-themed summer finale episode last night certainly had plenty of dance, from Boo and Carl's sweet Fred-and-Ginger number to Michelle's fantastic Cabaret dream sequence (more of Sutton Foster doing what Sutton Foster does best, please!). Was most of the choreography a bit on the wacky side, as per "Bunheads" tradition?

Fall is almost here. What will you do this year to take your training to the next level? Smart dancers know they need to stay on the lookout for opportunities that will improve their artistry, whether it's a new competition, a mock-audition course or a master class in a technique they've never tried before.

 

The Ballet Boyz just might be Britain's coolest classical rebels. Former Royal Ballet dancers Michael Nunn and Billy Trevitt broke off from that company in 2000 to start their own thing, choreographing a ballet for the two of them and Sylvie Guillem, launching an all-male troupe called TALENT, producing Darcey Bussell's farewell, creating a documentary about Christopher Wheeldon's work at The Bolshoi, collaborating on films with choreographer Russell Mailphant. They're remixed ballet into a truly 21st-century art form.

 

When Angelin Preljocaj asked Bolshoi Ballet dancers to improvise while creating a joint ballet on that company and his two years ago, the room exploded. “They went crazy!” he told Scotsman reporter Kelly Apter, “and did things very differently from the dancers in this part of Europe, who are used to improvising.

Raisins may be small, but their benefits are huge. A recent study published in the Journal of The International Society of Sports Nutrition found that athletes who ate raisins before a workout had more energy, moved more quickly and burned more fat than those who didn't. The dried grapes are chock-full of fiber, potassium and iron, and have no added sugars. Plus, their price tag is easy on the wallet, making them an all-around excellent choice to stash inside your dance bag.

Extra photos of Ashley Bouder at home in her New York apartment. Videos of Cedar Lake Contemporary Ballet in performance. An exclusive look behind the scenes with cover ballerina Misa Kuranaga. Pointe's August/September iPad edition is loaded with goodies!

 

Our final day in Israel was magical. The first stop was Mt. Olive for an amazing overlook of the Old City of Jerusalem. Everything was layered, both in the sense of time, with each century erecting their monuments upon the previous, and in the sense of religion, with the most holy of sites for so many all converging on each other in this small area.

On Thursday, we performed in Rishon Lezion just outside of Tel Aviv. The theater was a large marble complex with extensive backstage facilities including a separate studio to take class and spacious dressing rooms for everyone. We warmed up, did a quick rehearsal and then had a few hours for dinner before the show. The performance went really well, even though the audience was slightly more subdued compared to the raucous atmosphere of the Karmiel Dance Festival.

Healthy eating is always more fun when it comes in the form of finger food. Shelby Elsbree, a Royal Danish Ballet dancer and a prolific amateur chef, created this light and refreshing recipe: "I decided to try a spin on the summer salads I've been experimenting with this season, and came up with a fun way to serve one of my staple combinations."

 

Pennsylvania Ballet soloist Abigail Mentzer is a dancer's dancer. On top of her innate sweetness and lyricism, she also makes all the girls around her look good—in her handmade skirts. What started as a hobby four years ago has blossomed into a lucrative side business. This fall, Capezio's flagship store in New York will sell her Abigail Mentzer Designs in a trial run. Her skirts have done for dancers' bottom halves what Yumiko leotards did for the top.