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May 2020 issue

Posted on April 28, 2020

05 DT May 2020 Crop

With everyday life seemingly at a standstill, I was beginning to wonder how we could possibly fill the pages of Dancing Times this month. Although by necessity there are fewer pages than normal in this issue, in the event it didn’t prove too onerous, as there is as much to discuss about dance during a pandemic as there is in normal times. Although you will notice COVID-19 as a recurrent thread running throughout the publication, the virus has brought up some surprising truths about our need to continue to dance, perform or to compete.

Dance and the COVID-19 crisis

Daniel Pratt, a dancer with Sarasota Ballet, gives a professional view on the pandemic

Coronavirus May20“Professional dancers train, rehearse and hone their bodies to express control over a messy frame. They go out on stage and understand what’s going to happen at any given point as dictated to them by the beat of the music or the structure of the choreography. Yet, interestingly, within that utter control is the desire to get lost, to be free and express something words can’t communicate. Creative endeavours always walk this paradoxical tightrope. I think it is the relationship a dancer has with control and the diligence they exhibit in their daily training that means being told something really is out of your control is unsettling.”

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Get your dance fix at home

Marianka Swain recommends feel-good dance content you can enjoy without leaving the house

Dance at home May“It’s a heart-breaking time for the arts industry, with the closure of most venues and cancellations of shows – leaving dancers and audiences alike stuck at home. However, there’s good news for those with itchy feet: options are springing up for accessing content online; with streamed shows and virtual dance learning. Plus, you can always find those classic dance clips on YouTube…”

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In the midst of the pandemic

Fátima Nollén talks to American Ballet Theatre’s Herman Cornejo about his 20-year career with the company, as well as future projects

027 DT May 2020“The current confinement has also made him realise how much he enjoys being with his family, as well as seeing his son, Nico, born in January to his Argentine wife María, grow every day. ‘It’s a blessing, particularly when life has become so critical.’

“Like many dancers, Cornejo has found a way of working from home to keep fit, and to remain mentally healthy and creative. ‘I bought a gym set to combine exercises with the daily ballet classes I do alone, or with friends in video conferences, thanks to Carlos López, our ballet coach. It’s a way to keep motivated. With everything cancelled, my professional life feels like it is on hold. The hardest part is the disruption to my daily training. Despite keeping my muscles active, the quality one acquires from rehearsals and performances can’t be emulated in the living room.’”

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Also in the May issue…

Andria Hall shares her insights with Paul Arrowsmith

Choreographer Robert Cohan in conversation with Paul R W Jackson

Igor Stupnikov sees the opening of the Maryinsky’s XIX International Ballet Festival

Alice Sheppard looks at dance separated by a common language

Debbie Malina considers why sleep plays such a crucial role in maintaining the health and wellbeing of dancers

Nicola Rayner hears from Dr Peter Lovatt about his new book, The Dance Cure

Jack Reavely remembers Len Scrivener and Nellie Duggan

Margaret Willis interviews our Dancer of the Month, Scottish Ballet’s Nicholas Shoesmith

Laura Cappelle and Jack Anderson report on the effects of COVID-19 on the dance scenes in Paris and New York

Marianka Swain speaks to Alyn Johnson and Gino Gabriel, a new Welsh same-sex competitive couple

James Whitehead, Phil Meacham and Simon Selmon look at how you can develop your dancing at home. Watch our Tips on Technique video, combining practice and housework! 

Graham Spicer reviews the Ballet of La Scala, Milan, in a programme of works by Hans van Manen and Roland Petit

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05 DT May 2020Liam Scarlett sacked from The Royal Ballet, coronavirus update, COVID-19 and ballroom, José Limón Dance Foundation, new film by Pablo Larrain, Michael Clark on BBC iPlayer, we look back to May 1980

Reviews include 2Faced Dance Company, Carmen Sylva Gala in Bucharest, Norwegian National Ballet

The May issue is now available in some branches of WHSmith – or you can buy your print copy here or buy your digital copy from all good app stores





Simon Oliver has been production editor of Dancing Times since 2010 and is highly experienced in design across print and online magazine production. Throughout his career, Simon has worked on a diverse range of subjects including music, family history, book collecting and poker.

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