Ballet Stars

The 8 Ballet Dogs You Need to be Following on Instagram

Ingrid Silva and her dog, Frida Kahlo. Nathan Sayers.

You're probably already following your favorite dancers on Instagram, but did you know that you can follow many of their dogs, too? We rounded up some of our favorite dog-centered accounts and hashtags to keep you pawsitively entertained (sorry, we can't help ourselves).


Cora and Maya (American Ballet Theatre's Sarah Lane and Luis Ribagorda)

Sarah Lane and Luis Ribagorda's pups Cora and Maya update their profile pretty frequently. Often accompanying Lane to the ABT studios, they can also be seen using tutus or piles of pink tights as dog beds.

Frida Kahlo (Dance Theatre of Harlem's Ingrid Silva)

French bulldog Frida Kahlo follows her mom, Ingrid Silva, almost everywhere. Frida's profile shows that she enjoys long walks in the park and dressing up in matching costumes with Silva for Halloween. Frida even kept Silva company during her Pointe cover shoot. With over 11,000 followers, we think Frida's doing pretty well.

Zipper Fly DeBona-Tilton (Ballet West's Allison DeBona and Rex Tilton)

A self-described ballet lover, this Salt Lake City-based Shih Tzu seems to live a pretty good life. He's especially fond of pointe shoes and pumpkin spice lattes.

Pickles (ABT's Lauren Post)

While you can follow Pickles on her own Instagram page (it is 2019 after all), she's also frequently featured on owner Lauren Post's profile. Like most ABT dogs, Pickles seems to spend a lot of time lounging in the studio. She might sometimes have bad hair days, but she's not letting them get in her way.

Quincy Peanut (New York City Ballet's Isabella LaFreniere)

NYCB pup Quincy seems to have a voracious appetite for ice cream (also seen here and here). Like most millennials, Quincy also has a soft spot for Harry Potter.

Leonidas (The Mikhailovsky Ballet's Julian Mackay)

With his dad Julian Mackay living so far away from his native Montana, Leonidas (Leo for short) is glad to be there to keep him company in Russia. Leo's profile shows him to be highly cultured. In addition to ballet, he has a taste for fine art and loves spending time in the theater. He's also very well traveled.

Riley (ABT's Devon Teuscher)

Unlike many of his canine peers, Riley doesn't have his own profile, but he does have his own hashtag, #thelifeofri, which many ABT dancers use to post shots of him. He can be seen making cameos in rehearsal videos with stars like James Whiteside, or hanging out in his favorite spot; under the piano, on a tutu.

Francisco Estevez, Courtesy Colorado Ballet Academy

When you're looking for a ballet program to take you to the next level, there are a lot of factors to consider. While it's tempting to look for the biggest name that will accept you, the savvy dancer knows that successful training has more to do with the attention and opportunities you'll get.

We put together a few of the most important things for dancers to look for in a summer or year-round training program, with the help of the experts at Colorado Ballet Academy:

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Everything Nutcracker
Pennsylvania Ballet demi-soloist Thays Golz as the Sugar Plum Fairy during a stage rehearsal for George Balanchine's Nutcracker. All photography by Arian Molina Soca.

For many professional ballet dancers, Nutcracker means weeks of performances. That usually translates to multiple casts—and important breakout opportunities for those in the junior ranks. On the afternoon of December 13, Pennsylvania Ballet demi-soloist Thays Golz made her debut as the Sugar Plum Fairy along with her Cavalier, corps member Austin Eylar. For the Brazilian-born dancer, who joined PAB in 2018 after two seasons at Houston Ballet, Sugar Plum marks one of her first principal roles.

"I'm really excited," says Golz. PAB artistic director Angel Corella appointed 12 casts of Sugar Plum Fairies over the run's 29 performances. "When I first found out, I was like, 'Pinch me!' I still can't believe it."

We caught up with Golz just before her debut to see how she prepared for her big break.

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Rosalie O'Connor, Courtesy US Prix de Ballet

The US Prix de Ballet is taking an unconventional approach to the ballet competition—by putting the competitors' health first. After a successful first year in 2018, the Prix is returning to San Diego, CA this February with an even more comprehensive lineup of wellness workshops and master classes, in addition, of course, to the high-level competition.

Though the talent is top-notch, the environment is friendly, says HARID Conservatory faculty member Victoria Schneider, who serves on US Prix de Ballet's elite panel of judges. "The wellbeing of the dancer is the main focus," says Schneider, who awarded three scholarships to HARID at last year's competition.

US Prix de Ballet was born after its founders traveled to the Japan Grand Prix International Ballet Competition in 2016. "The company ran every aspect of the competition with professionalism, dignity, honor and precision," says founder Neisha Hernandez. "We knew we wanted this level of experience for America."

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