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Dancers certainly don't need anyone to tell them how physical their profession is. But now, we have the data to prove it.

Researchers at InsuranceProviders.com analyzed data from the Occupational Information Network (O*NET), a national organization developed through support from the U.S. Department of Labor/Employment and Training Administration, to determine the 20 most physically demanding jobs in the country. They analyzed the level of strength, stamina, flexibility and coordination required for a host of jobs, and each category was assigned

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Sasha Waltz and Johannes Öhman. Photo by André Rival, Courtesy Staatsballett Berlin

Staatsballett Berlin announced today that artistic directors Sasha Waltz and Johannes Öhman intend to step down at the end of 2020, despite having only held the posts since 2019 and summer 2018, respectively.

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When French President Emmanuel Macron proposed widespread pension reforms in December, the repercussions were felt almost immediately throughout France. In Paris, protests reverberated through the city. Metro trains halted, the Eiffel Tower was shut down, schools closed, and, at the Paris Opéra Ballet, dancers, singers, artisans and technicians went on strike.

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Matthew Bourne's Swan Lake. Johan Persson, Courtesy The Kennedy Center.

Wonder what's going on in ballet this week? We've rounded up some highlights.

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Lizzo and her backup dancers and singers at the 2019 Music Video Awards. Courtesy MTV.

Last summer, Lizzo put out a call on Twitter asking her fans to make a ballet to her song "Truth Hurts," and dancers everywhere responded (our favorites still might be Harper Watters and Erica Lall). But now, Lizzo has fully proven herself to be a bunhead at heart: Last night, she put out a plea on Instagram looking for ballet dancers on pointe to perform with her. "I would like ballet dancers that look like me" she said in the video selfie. "I know you all exist. We've been looking, and it's hard to find."

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Courtesy Shanghai Ballet

Wonder what's going on in ballet this week? We've rounded up some highlights.

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Samantha Hope Galler and Alexander Peters rehearse Jerome Robbins' I'm Old Fashioned. Alexander Iziliaev, Courtesy MCB.

In 1983, at New York City Ballet, Jerome Robbins decided to create a tribute to the great Fred Astaire, one of the most influential artists of the 20th century. Astaire dazzled audiences on the silver screen, making an unmistakable impact on dance in film. Robbins decided to set his ballet against the backdrop of film projections of Astaire dancing with Rita Hayworth in a scene from the 1942 film You Were Never Lovelier. According to NYCB's website, when Robbins wrote to Astaire letting him know of his intentions, Astaire replied, "I'm honored that you want to do what you suggest." The result was I'm Old Fashioned, a ballet that's full of Astaire's signature elegance, and the glamour and romance of his films. The work transports the audience back to a time of long ball gowns and men in white ties and tails, when love stories were told through dance.

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Prix de Lausanne 2019 Choreographic Project participants in Didy Velman's Is To Be. Rodrigo Buas, Courtesy Prix de Lausanne.

For the ballet world, Lausanne, Switzerland means one thing: the home of the prestigious Prix de Lausanne. But dancers aren't the only ones to think of the French-speaking city as synonymous with competition. Lausanne is the base for the International Olympic Committee headquarters, and this year it is also hosting the Youth Olympic Games.

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Are you a total bunhead who loves to write? You might be the perfect fit for Pointe. We're seeking an editorial intern who's equally passionate about ballet and journalism.

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Bolshoi Ballet principals Olga Smirnova and Artemy Belyakov in Alexei Ratmansky's production of Giselle. Damir Yusupov, Courtesy of Bolshoi Theatre.

Bolshoi fans, listen up: On Sunday, January 26, the company will broadcast Alexei Ratmansky's new production of Giselle—captured from a live performance in Moscow earlier that day—to over 450 North American movie theaters as part of its Bolshoi Ballet in Cinema season. Olga Smirnova and Artemy Belyakov will star as Giselle and Albrecht, along with Angelina Vlashinets as Myrtha and Denis Savin as Hans, the Gatekeeper.

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Ballet West Academy Professional Training Division student Olivia Book. Haskell Photography, Courtesy Book.

When you see Olivia Book dance, you first notice her long lines, incredible control and captivating stage presence. It's obvious why the Canadian dancer received high marks at Toronto's Youth American Grand Prix competition last year—the girl has talent! It isn't until a second or third glance that you realize that one of the 16-year-old's arms is a little different than most. Born with congenital upper extremity limb deficiency, Book's right arm ends just above her elbow and is significantly smaller than her left one. "My right arm, or 'little arm,' has forced me to rely on my left arm for all of my daily life activities," says Book.

Though she's had to work twice as hard at things that might be second nature for many dancers, Book's passion for ballet trumps any of the physical challenges she faces. "I love how beautiful ballet is," she says, "and there are so many professional ballerinas that I admire and look up to. Knowing that one day I could dance that beautifully and make ballet my career makes me so excited."

Book, who trains full time at Ballet West's Professional Training Division, appears to be well on her way to making her dreams of dancing professionally a reality. Pointe talked with Book to learn more about her path to Ballet West Academy and how she manages some of her unique challenges.

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Gene Kelly and Leslie Caron in a scene from An American in Paris. Courtesy Fathom Events.

If you loved Christopher Wheeldon's An American in Paris on Broadway, you can now see the 1951 Oscar-winning movie it's based on in all its Technicolor glory. Fathom Events will present MGM's An American in Paris, starring Gene Kelly and French ballerina Leslie Caron, and with music by George and Ira Gershwin, in select theaters nationwide January 19 and 22.

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