Photo by Kyle Froman for Pointe.

Ballet West's Katlyn Addison on Why She Wraps Her Toes With Hockey Tape & Other Dance Bag Essentials

Much of what Ballet West soloist Katlyn Addison carries around in her (two) dance bags has been repurposed. She wraps her toes in black hockey tape which her brother, a National Hockey League player in their home country of Canada, ships to her, and she keeps her bobby pins in an old glass salsa jar. "I like to reuse things," says Addison. She totes everything around in shopping bags (one for pointe shoes and sewing tools, one for everything else) from the clothing store Free People.

Pro Pointe Shoe Hacks From Ballet West's Katlyn Addison www.youtube.com


Addison's routine is filled with other hacks as well. Though she carries a heating pad, it's not for her muscles—it's for her shoes. "I always wear socks for barre, so by the time I put on my shoes they're nice and toasty, and softer." And she's never without a bottle of avocado oil, which she uses in her hair to counter Salt Lake City's dry climate. Another staple for Addison is a journal. "I'm also a choreographer," she says. "Anytime I get inspired by other dancers, I write it down; I usually get ideas for pieces by watching ballet class."


Photo by Kyle Froman for Pointe.

The Goods

Clockwise from top right: heating pad, fruit and nuts ("to snack on right after class"), avocado oil, deodorant, towel, coconut oil for skin, bobby pin jar, mints, phone, gum ("the other dancers know me for always having bubble gum"), choreographic journal, 2nd Skin Squares, MAC lipstick, Estée Lauder lip gloss, rubber balls ("the pink one's for my feet and the blue one's for my hips"), Thera-Band, hockey tape, Satellite City Instant Glue, pointe shoe tools, pouch for jewelry with watch and necklace, foundation for pointe shoes, Bloch Heritage pointe shoes, Yeti thermos for water, Free People shopping bags.

Latest Posts


Left to right: Dance Theatre of Harlem's Daphne Lee, Amanda Smith, Lindsey Donnell and Alexandra Hutchinson in a scene from Dancing Through Harlem. Derek Brockington, Courtesy Dance Theatre of Harlem

Dancers Share Their Key Takeaways After a Year of Dancing on Film

Creating dances specifically for film has become one of the most effective ways that ballet companies have connected with audiences and kept dancers employed during the pandemic. Around the world, dance organizations are finding opportunities through digital seasons, whether conceiving cinematic, site-specific pieces or filming works within a traditional theater. And while there is a consistent sentiment that nothing will ever substitute the thrill of a live show, dancers are embracing this new way of performing.

Keep reading SHOW LESS

#TBT: Mikhail Baryshnikov in "Fancy Free" (1981)

In Jerome Robbins's 1944 ballet Fancy Free, three sailors on leave spend the day at a bar, attempting to woo two young women by out-dancing and out-charming one another. In this clip from 1981, Mikhail Baryshnikov, who was then both the artistic director of American Ballet Theatre and a leading performer with the company, pulls out all the stops to win the ladies' affections.

Keep reading SHOW LESS
Bethany Kirby, Courtesy Tulsa Ballet

An Infectious-Disease Physician on What Vaccines Mean for Ballet

As the coronavirus pandemic grinds into its second year, the toll on ballet companies—and dancers—has been steep. How long before dancers can rehearse and perform as they once did?

Like most things, the return to normal for ballet seems to hinge on vaccinations. Just over 22 percent of people in the U.S. are now vaccinated, a way from the estimated 70 to 85 percent experts believe can bring back something similar to pre-pandemic life.

But what would it mean for 100 percent of a ballet company to be vaccinated? Tulsa Ballet artistic director Marcello Angelini is about to find out—and hopes it brings the return of big ballets on the big stage.

"I don't think companies like ours can survive doing work for eight dancers in masks," Angelini says. "If we want to work, dance, and be in front of an audience consistently and with the large works that pay the bills, immunization is the only road that leads there."

Keep reading SHOW LESS

Editors' Picks