*As a result of the pandemic, Dance Gazette is available in digital form only.
Sometimes the world coaxes you gently towards change. Sometimes it gives you a shove. During the rude shove of this pandemic time, what had been gradual changes – working from home, moving online – became unavoidable. Life dragged us along, and we had to adjust. In the past year, I’ve watched more dance on my phone than I have on stage. I’ve seen less of my friends, but more of my cats. As life, at least in the UK, shuffles out of lockdown, many changes are here to stay (especially the cats).
Dance Gazette is changing too. After 91 years as the printed voice of the Royal Academy of Dance, it re-invents itself as a digital-only magazine. We’ll still bring you urgent and inspiring stories, exploring how the RAD impacts upon the world and how the world affects us all. We’ll still work with imaginative writers, photographers and illustrators. But we also hope to bring you more. More multimedia content, more ways to bring stories to life. And more sheer pleasure – like the swoonsome animated cover Kingsley Nebechi created for this launch issue. Life changes, even when we’d rather it didn’t – because change is how we know we’re alive.
David Jays, editor
Take a tour of the new digital Dance Gazette. We want you to feel at home here! [PARAGRAPH TO FOLLOW. DIGI-TOUR?]
As ballet companies return to the stage, will it be business as usual, or time for change? Have the MeToo and Black Lives Matter movements finally forced a rethink of outdated behaviours? Sally Howard asks young dancers what they need and expect – from auditions to representation, from casting to pastoral care.
Amber Scott, Australian Ballet’s star ballerina, has been an RAD favourite ever since she won a medal at the Genée. This year, the RAD’s flagship competition (now named The Fonteyn) is online, including coaching sessions for the candidates with star dancers like Amber. She tells Jane Albert about passing it forward – online.
Get ready for breakdance as an Olympic sport. South Korean dancers are sure to be among the favourites at the 2024 games in Paris. David D Lee meets the b-boys – and the few b-girls – in Seoul. Their biggest challenge? Convincing their parents it’s a proper career.
News flash: the world is in climate crisis. Sanjoy Roy meets people working to make dance greener – including the architect of the RAD’s new headquarters, who says the last thing you’d expect from an architect: ‘Do we even need more new buildings in the world?’
Fresh faces at the lake
If we’re transforming dance, why not rethink the big bird at the heart of the repertoire? Anna Winter speaks to choreographers making new versions of Swan Lake. Strange but true: star dance makers Hofesh Shechter and Marie Chouinard have never even seen Swan Lake.
Writing the dance
We love a geek at Dance Gazette. When the American novelist Brandon Taylor – whose debut, Real Life, was on the Booker prize shortlist – saw World Ballet Day online, he said ‘it was the best thing I’d ever seen.’ Now his new collection of stories is built around dance.
Your favourite Dance Gazette columns are still to hand. Composer and cellist Ayanna Witter-Johnson picks her perfect playlist. Lachlan Monaghan, Birmingham Royal Ballet dancer and coach for The Fonetyn, shares his best advice. The big picture is a radiant Karsavina portrait gifted to the RAD. And Xander Parish tells us why dance matters.
Why Dance Matters
The RAD’s new podcast is a series of conversations with extraordinary people from the world of dance and beyond. In this launch season, David Jays, editor of Dance Gazette, hears from Xander Parish about rescuing his career to become a Mariinsky Ballet principal, choreographer Cathy Marston about the secrets of the rehearsal room and doctor Guddi Singh about introducing dance into hospitals. Listen and subscribe here.