Spanish ballerina Lucia Lacarra left Bavarian State Ballet, her company of 14 years, in 2016 for life as an international guest artist, accompanied by her husband and fellow dancer, Marlon Dino. As an artist on the move, she packs her roomy dance bag with only the bare necessities. When she's home in Germany, however, the rest of the space is reserved for supplies for her 2-year-old daughter, Laia. Along with snacks, a changing bag, water, a pacifier and baby wipes, Laia requires her favorite toy lamb named Baa Baa.

In New York City for the Youth America Grand Prix gala, Lacarra pared her dance bag back down to the essentials. "As you mature as an artist you learn what you need to carry and how to limit yourself," she says. When she was younger, Lacarra would tote multiple brands of the same product, but now she knows exactly what she likes. Some items even pull double duty: Tan tape protects blisters and secures her wedding ring, which Lacarra wears when she performs.


Photo by Kyle Froman

The Goods, clockwise from left: Two pairs of pointe shoes for rehearsal ("I never sew pointe shoes at home, especially now that I have a child. You'll always catch me sewing during rehearsal breaks"); wallet; blue zippered case with ribbons, elastic and darning materials; knee pads (for one of her YAGP performances); resistance band for foot exercises; gel toe pads; phone; pens ("I always take them from hotels!"); black case for earbuds ("For galas, you often have to give yourself class. I use these to listen to music"); various toe caps and their zippered bag; energy bars from Germany ("I usually pay more attention to the taste than the ingredients"); lip balm; tissues; Leukoplast tan tape; hairbrush; mints; chewing gum.

Summer Intensive Survival
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There's a sweet spot toward the end of August—after summer intensives have wrapped up and before it's time to head back to school or work—where the days are long, lazy and begging to be spent neck-deep in a pile of good books. Whether you're looking for inspiration for the upcoming season or trying to brush up on your dance history, you can never go wrong with an excellent book on ballet. We've gathered eight titles (all available at common booksellers like Amazon and Barnes and Noble) guaranteed to give you a deeper understanding of the art form, to add to your end-of-summer reading list.

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