Understandably, you may feel disappointed, missing out on incredible live dance shows and uplifting dance classes at your local studio. We completely empathize, but you can still enjoy dance at home. Although appropriately social distancing, the dance community has pulled together to offer online dance classes, stream dance performances and create fun dance challenges, such as #quarantinedance videos. These are the most comprehensive dance resources for dance lovers around the world (many for free).
Comprehensive Dance at Home Resources
There are many dance artists and organizations that are offering a variety of online dance classes and performances. But unless you know where to look, they can be hard to find. These thorough dance at home resources either offer their own comprehensive programs or they have collated large listings for you.
Sadler’s Wells Digital Stage
Sadler’s Wells, an incredible dance venue in London that remains “dedicated to dance in all its forms,” launched their digital stage on March 27 (World Theater Day). In the wake of their Covid-19 show cancellations, the organization will present full-length dance productions and screendance films. BalletBoyz’ Deluxe was first in the line-up, to be followed by Wilkie Branson’s TOM, Rumpelstiltskin from balletLORENT and a film of National Youth Dance Company’s MADHEAD, choreographed by Botis Seva and directed by Ben Williams. Sadler’s Wells Digital Stage also includes dance workshops that have been created for both children and adults over 60.
“Sadler’s Wells has been a platform for artists for more than 300 years and we are determined to continue to bring you great dance even if our stages are dark.”Alistair Spalding, Artistic Director and Chief Executive of Sadler’s Wells
Dancing Alone Together
The name of this website says it all. Although we are no longer physically gathering together to dance, we are still united as we dance individually. Katherine Disenhof, a professional dancer with NW Dance Project, has divided the site into three different sections: Move, Create and Watch.
Dancing Along Together: Move
This area lists live-streamed dance classes from the USA. (Depending where you live, joining may be more or less feasible.) Many of these free online dance classes are broadcast over Instagram, Facebook and Zoom. You can filter classes by a range of dance styles, including African dance, Bollywood and jazz – in addition to ballet, hip-hop, modern/ contemporary and ballroom/ Latin social dance.
Dancing Along Together: Create
Dancing isn’t just about moving – it’s also about artistry and creation. This hub will get your creative juices flowing, since it’s stocked with intriguing dance challenges. See where the prompts take you!
Dancing Along Together: Watch
If you want to watch dance from the comfort of your own home, Dancing Alone Together has compiled a list of organizations that are temporarily sharing their work on the web.
English National Ballet: #ENBAtHome Series
If you’ve trained in ballet, you’ll find something calming about the rigorous routine of a ballet class. Artistic Director and Lead Principal of the English National Ballet, Tamara Rojo CBE, has recorded a series of one-hour classes to keep you moving at home. The series starts in the ballet studio, and later classes carry on from Rojo’s kitchen. The ‘ENB At Home | English National Ballet’ playlist on YouTube currently contains five full classes and some warm-up exercises. Their hashtag: #ENBAtHome.
They have also taken to streaming live watch parties on Wednesday evenings, hosted on Facebook and YouTube. Past performances include Broken Wings about Frida Kahlo’s life by Annabelle Lopez Ochoa and Rudolf Nureyev’s Romeo & Juliet. (It was quite fun to see the ballet after learning some of the choreography with London Ballet Masterclasses.)
Ballet Hispánico B Unidos Series
Ballet Hispánico has scheduled a weekly program of Instagram videos for their new B Unidos campaign. Their varied Instagram series caters for a variety of ages and can be found on their Ballet Hispánico education account (below). The week begins with motivational quotes on Monday, followed by free online classes on Take Action Tuesday. (The first week included activities for little ones, hip-hop for ages 6-12 and ballet for ages 13+.) Wepa Wednesdays explore various styles of Latin dance, while Thursdays focus on wellness and Flashback Fridays look back on the past 50 years with a dig into Ballet Hispánico’s archives.
Curious about their shows? Read our review of Ballet Hispanico’s The Power of the Latina Voice.
“As a community of dancers, artists, and human beings, we are all in this together. We will persevere through this challenging time and we hope that these videos provide a coping outlet, for you, for our followers and the community overall.”– Eduardo Vilaro, artistic director and CEO of Ballet Hispánico
Gibney Dance Covid-19 Resource List
Gibney Dance of New York City has compiled their own list of dance at home resources in response to Covid-19 disrupting everyday life. You’ll see a bold link to the Gibney online studio, which offers class on a sliding scale from $0 – 10 and pays their instructors regardless of contribution amount, in addition to a bundle of other digital dance classes. The page also contains a list of events and performances that are streaming online in addition to a list of self-care resources.
Stream Dance Shows at Home
Even if you can’t take a trip to the theater, you can still watch incredible dance footage from your couch. Or even your bed. We won’t judge!
New York Live Arts: (Re)Live Arts Streaming
The creatively titled (Re)Live Arts Streaming portal by New York Live Arts provides three videos to view for free each week. The dance films come from both the Bill T. Jones/ Arnie Zane Company and the Live Arts archives. This week’s picks include: Bill T. Jones/ Arnie Zane Company’s Shared Distance, the 2014 Live Ideas Festival: James Baldwin This Time! and Preeti Vasudevan’s Stories by Hand. The page is refreshed with three new films each Thursday. There is an optional button to donate at the bottom of the page.
On the Boards TV
Seattle’s On the Boards theater launched their On the Boards TV platform in 2010. They “[deliver] full-length, high-quality contemporary performance films” of dance, theater and music. On the Boards TV is particularly useful for modern dance fans, with films of performances by Kyle Abraham, Degenerate Art Ensemble and Faye Driscoll. You can rent a performance for $5 USD or buy a film from $15. If you’d like to see four or more performances throughout the year, an annual subscription for $50 is your best bet.
Russia’s Bolshoi Theater in Moscow has decided to share a range of their full-length ballet videos on their YouTube channel. As their website dramatically states, “For the first time in history, Russia’s Bolshoi Theater is going digital.” Each of the Bolshoi’s most beloved ballets (and operas) from their ‘Golden Collection’ will remain live for 24 hours after the broadcast. Swan Lake started the series on March 27, followed by Sleeping Beauty the next day. The next scheduled ballets are Marco Spada on April 4 and The Nutcracker on April 10.
“Theatre is deeply moving and is a rich experience, and although we cannot perform in front of live audiences, we’re excited to share our performances digitally.”– Vladmir Urin, General Director of the Bolshoi Theatre
Royal Opera House
Similarly to the Bolshoi Theater, the Royal Opera House is London will release some recordings of their ballets and operas online. Viewers can tune in on the ROH’s Facebook or YouTube pages, and performances will be available to view for a week. They showed The Royal Ballet/ The Royal Ballet School’s Peter and the Wolf on March 27. The next ballet is The Metamorphosis (April 17), followed by The Winter’s Tale (May 1) with full-length operas shown in between. The Anastasia premiere (May 15) is followed by The Cellist (May 29) and La Fille mal gardée (June 12). Their hashtag: #OurHouseToYourHouse.
The Royal Opera House specifically gives a shout out to Marquee TV, since the platform has licensed a handful of the Royal Ballet’s performances, among them: Giselle, The Nutcracker, Two Pigeons, Symphonic Variations, The Dream and more. Their other ballet shows feature the Paris Opera Ballet, the Bolshoi Ballet and Royal Swedish Ballet. Marquee TV also has a significant selection of modern dance works, such as: Nederlands Dans Theatre’s Petite Morte, Alonzo King Lines Ballet’s Dust and Light and Cloud Gate Dance Theatre of Taiwan’s Cursive II. At time of posting, Marquee TV is currently offering a 30-day free trial. Afterwards, the monthly subscription fee is £8.99 GBP per month or £89.99 per year, reduced to an annual price of £69.99 – pending an available discount.
Although Medici TV advertises itself as ‘the world’s leading classical music channel’, the digital platform streams ballets. Expect to find all of the classics, like Rudolf Nureyev’s Swan Lake, Marius Petipa’s Sleeping Beauty and George Balanchine’s Jewels. Newer pieces include Alice’s Adventure in Wonderland by Christopher Wheeldon and Last Work by Ohad Naharin on his famed Batsheva Dance Company. They even feature the athletic Georgian National Ballet Sukhishvili – a truly fantastic sight to behold. Videos on ‘replay’ can be viewed for free by creating an account. Otherwise, the monthly subscription fee is £9.90 per month or £99 per year. (An offer is currently showing to receive your first year for £64.35 until the end of the month: March 30, 2020.)
The Northern Ballet has announced an online Pay As You Feel Digital Season. Viewers are encouraged to donate what they can so that the ballet can pay their freelance dance artists, recoup income from lost performances and present new ballets. They are currently showing EGO, while 1984 (choreographed by Jonathan Watkins) will be available for one month from April 3. Little Red Riding Hood, perfect for children, comes online April 10; and it’s followed by the Northern Ballet’s 50th Anniversary Celebration Gala on April 17. They have also hinted that David Nixon’s Dracula will be coming to BBC Four and BBC iPlayer as part of the BBC’s Culture in Quarantine Season.
BBC Dance Shows and Documentaries
The British Broadcasting Channel regularly features programs on dance. Teresa Guerreiro lays out their 2020 dance season on Culture Whisper. Highlights include the Northern Ballet’s Dracula, as mentioned above, alongside Crystal Pite and Jonathon Young’s Revisor on company Kidd Pivot and BalletBoyz’ Deluxe double bill. There’s also documentaries on Irish dance (Devil in the Feet) and male dancers in the Royal Ballet (Men in Dance), as well as a biopic on famed ballet dancer Carlos Acosta (Yuli, The Carlos Acosta Story).
Sorry guys, this one is only for dancers based in the UK. But we felt your pain when tried to watch shows from the Paris Opera Ballet. Still, there’s plenty else to see!
Béjart Ballet Lausanne
The Swiss ballet company, Béjart Ballet Lausanne, is temporarily uploading dance shows online for viewers to watch at home. And they’re likely ballets that you haven’t seen before… (Or at least not many times.) First comes t ‘M et variations by Gil Roman – ‘a series of variations about love and the internal need for dance’ – on March 29. His Syncope becomes available on April 10. The company also shows Béjart fête Maurice (re-staged by Gil Roman) from April 2 and Béjart’s The Magic Flute from April 16.
“The company would like to invite itself virtually into your living rooms and dance for you for a month.”– Béjart Ballet Lausanne
The Munich Opera has also decided to digitally stream a selection of their performances via staatsoper.tv. Their program heavily features opera, but they screened George Balanchine’s Jewels earlier in the month and will also stream a Triple Bill with choreographies by Alexei Ratmansky, David Dawson and Sharon Eyal of the Bayerisches Staatsballett in May. They also present a weekly concert on Monday, which sometimes contains short excerpts of dance from their ballet company.
Learn Dance at Home
You don’t need to hit the studio to dance. Just clear out some space – or go the extra mile and set up your own home dance studio. Then get dancing with one of these online dance platforms. You’ll find that dancing at home has never been easier.
Dutch National Ballet: Ballet Class with Ernst Meisner
The Nationale Opera & Ballet in Amsterdam has also created a YouTube playlist of classes that dancers can take at home. They are led by Ernst Meisner, the artistic director of the Dutch Opera and Ballet’s Junior Company, who is accompanied by a live pianist (for two out of two classes thus far). These virtual ballet barre classes are just under forty minutes long.
Battery Dance TV
Battery Dance of New York City launched Battery Dance TV in response to social distancing on March 27. Although once weekly Artist Talks and once daily short performances are scheduled, the platform mostly focuses on virtual dance classes. Morning fitness classes prepare the body before dance technique class in the afternoon, then ballroom classes close out the evening. Each class is 30 minutes, so you should be able to easily slip them into your day. They’re also free, although you can show your appreciation by donating to the artists.
“Battery Dance TV allows us to continue connecting people across the world through dance at this time of social distancing and isolation… For 45 years, we have explored the power of dance as an art form and a means for social impact and connection. We are not going to stop now when the need is so great.”– Jonathan Hollander, artistic director of Battery Dance
PMT House of Dance
The PMT House of Dance in New York City is offering dance classes for free, conducted on Zoom. Most classes last 60 – 75 minutes, and there are plenty of lessons for beginners – such as breakin’ 101, basic jazz, beginner theater jazz and beginner hip hop. Other classes include capoeira, contemporary and a leaps and turns workshop. They suggest checking the class schedule regularly for updates. PMT also encourages users to donate to their GoFundMe campaign to support their artists and to buy bonds. (If you buy a $75 USD bond, you can redeem it for $100 worth of services when they reopen.)
Martha Graham Dance Company
Dancers from Martha Graham’s iconic company are sharing dance classes on Instagram live before they’re uploaded onto the Martha Graham Dance Company YouTube account. If you’ve never tried modern dance before, now is a great time. You’ll learn all about contractions, releasing said-contractions and spiraling. Upcoming classes include a beginner floor class, a Level II class and an all levels class. The company homepage currently lists the scheduled classes, which take place in Eastern Standard Time.
If you’re looking to pick up some fresh moves, you should stop by STEEZY. It’s especially useful for dance newbies with a 40 installations in their ‘Introduction to Dance Program.’ Their instructors teach urban dance, popping, krump, breaking, heels, house and dancehall. And their custom video controls allow dancers to switch views, loop moves, control speed and see yourself side-by-side with the instructors. Their social dis-dancing campaign, which shared one free class per day for a week, has ended, but they are currently offering a free 7-day trial. Afterwards, you can join for $20 USD per month or $99.99 per year (which amounts to $8.33 per month).
For a US west coast vibe, tune into TMilly TV. They’ve got a catalogue of choreography in hip-hop, contemporary, heels and jazz funk from LA’s most sought-after choreographers. Think popular YouTubers like: Jake Kodish, Jojo Gomez and Bailey Sok, as well as Brian Friedman (a choreographer for So You Think You Can Dance). New classes are added each week and memberships are available from $7.49 USD per month.
Dance Dispatches readers can receive 50% off memberships for their two months. The TMilly TV discount code “dispatches” will be valid from May 14 – June 14, 2020.
All information accurate and up-to-date at time of posting.
We hope you are staying well and keep dancing! Please share these dance at home resources with your dance friends by re-pinning the above images on Pinterest and posting on other platforms with the share buttons below.