How To: Derek Mitchell Teaches Pivot Turns

Derek Mitchell is on street jazz and contemporary faculty at Broadway Dance Center, where he grew up training under legends Frank Hatchett and Sheila Barker. Here, he teaches a street jazz pivot turn combination focusing on the importance of foot placement and spinal...

Technique: Banu Ogan

How I teach Cunningham technique The young students at the Complexions Contemporary Ballet summer intensive exchange uncomfortable glances when Banu Ogan walks into what, for most, is their first-ever class in Cunningham technique. “Please take off your ballet shoes,”...

Technique: Michael Vernon

How I Teach Ballet There is a black plastic folding chair sitting at the head of the studio, but it remains empty during most of Michael Vernon’s hour-and-a-half advanced class at Manhattan Youth Ballet. He’s walking among barres lined with dancers in black leotards,...

Technique: Charles Askegard

How I teach pas de deux Charles Askegard coaching Ballet Academy East students Marisa Trapani and Alexandros Pappajohn The hall cutting through Ballet Academy East on a late Thursday afternoon is hectic. Students sprawl out in straddles, hovering over math homework,...

Technique: Courtney Runft

How I teach pre-tap Courtney Runft and American Tap Dance Foundation student Julia Freer (age 5) demonstrate a maxi ford. Forty-five minutes of 3 1/2-year-olds in tap shoes may sound like a recipe for a throbbing headache, but Courtney Runft manages to keep the noise...

Technique: Alee Reed

How I teach ballroom dance On a gray Sunday afternoon, about 30 teenagers from all five New York City boroughs pile into a midtown Manhattan dance studio. Adele’s “Rumor Has It” plays from speakers, and with students clad in dresses, suits and clip-on ties, the scene...

Hand Habits

Common problems and how to correct them Boston Ballet in variations from “The Sleeping Beauty” prologue You have a student with nice facility and solid technique. She has a natural presence and can jump and turn, but something prevents her from looking...

Technique: Peggy Lyman Hayes

Though cross-training has become a necessity for aspiring dancers, it wasn’t always common for modern dance companies to embrace classical ballet training. “There was a big change in the ’70s when my generation joined the company, and we came in with ballet training,”...

Technique: Marni Thomas

How I teach a Graham contraction Marni Thomas with Fanny Gombert at the Martha Graham School of Contemporary Dance Marni Thomas teaches the Graham technique with an  unparalleled intensity and animation. As a master teacher at the Martha Graham School of Contemporary...

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