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Dancing Around Elephants , the DARE project,

with host Dr. Danelle Dickson - dancer turned physical therapist- features intimate conversations with dancers talking about the elephant in the room - Dance Injuries. We break down important information that dancers should know about injuries and how to manage them. These dancers discuss their experiences, struggles and triumphs in navigating some of the most difficult times in their career, with the hope of inspiring other dancers to be healthy, injury free and have successful dance careers.

Check out the latest season

Dancing Around Elephants Episode #1- Intro to Danelle Dickson PT, DPT,OCS
Learn about how Dancing Around Elephants came about and what to look forward to. Also learn a bit about your host Dr. Danelle Dickson.

Dancing Around Elephants: Season 2 Intro- Danelle Dickson PT, DPT,OCS
To kick off Season 2 of Dancing Around Elephants, I reflect a bit on where we are today - in the midsts of a pandemic - and how it has ushered a season of change.

Dancing Around Elephants Season 3 - Danelle Dickson PT, DPT, OCS
Here's the intro to Season 3. New times, new conversations to be had. I'm talking about all the Elephants in the room this season. Tune in!

๐˜ฟ๐™–๐™ฃ๐™˜๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™œ ๐˜ผ๐™ง๐™ค๐™ช๐™ฃ๐™™ ๐™€๐™ก๐™š๐™ฅ๐™๐™–๐™ฃ๐™ฉ๐™จ: ๐˜พ๐™๐™–๐™ก๐™ซ๐™–๐™ง ๐™ˆ๐™ค๐™ฃ๐™ฉ๐™š๐™ž๐™ง๐™ค ๐™‹๐™ฉ 3 ๐˜พ๐™ค๐™ข๐™ข๐™ช๐™ฃ๐™ž๐™ฉ๐™ฎ ๐™ž๐™จ ๐™—๐™š๐™ฉ๐™ฉ๐™š๐™ง Weโ€™re back with the the last of 3 parts with this incredible artiste. We talk about issues with job scarcity during the pandemic, learning to pivot with creativity and being open to learn in a noisy dance world. Chalvar talks nourishing your inner child and also the important role that leadership in dance , and wraps up his convo with his favorite things. ๐™„๐™‚: @๐™˜๐™๐™ก๐™ซ๐™ง๐™ข๐™ฃ๐™ฉ๐™ง๐™ค #dancerselfadvocacy #danceradvocacy #dancermentorship #danceinjuries #Classicaldance #blackboysdancetoo #blackballerina

๐˜ฟ๐™–๐™ฃ๐™˜๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™œ ๐˜ผ๐™ง๐™ค๐™ช๐™ฃ๐™™ ๐™€๐™ก๐™š๐™ฅ๐™๐™–๐™ฃ๐™ฉ๐™จ: ๐˜พ๐™๐™–๐™ก๐™ซ๐™–๐™ง ๐™ˆ๐™ค๐™ฃ๐™ฉ๐™ž๐™š๐™ง๐™ค ๐™‹๐™ฉ 2 ๐™€๐™ซ๐™š๐™ฃ ๐™ž๐™› ๐™ฎ๐™ค๐™ช๐™ง ๐™ซ๐™ค๐™ž๐™˜๐™š๐™จ ๐™จ๐™๐™–๐™ ๐™š๐™จ, ๐™จ๐™–๐™ฎ ๐™จ๐™ค๐™ข๐™š๐™ฉ๐™๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™œ! We are back with artist, teacher, dancer Chalvar Montiero. We talk about his emotions around another major injury and the necessity of listening to your physical and emotional body. We talk about how his work ethic has allowed him to show up with full confidence in challenging situations, his talents in education, and thoughts on leadership, and innovation and mental health. ๐™„๐™‚: @๐™˜๐™๐™ก๐™ซ๐™ง๐™ข๐™ฃ๐™ฉ๐™ง๐™ค #dancerselfadvocacy #danceradvocacy #dancermentorship #danceinjuries #Classicaldance #blackboysdancetoo #blackballerina

๐™„๐™ฃ๐™ฉ๐™š๐™œ๐™ง๐™ž๐™ฉ๐™ฎ ๐™ž๐™ฃ ๐˜ฟ๐™–๐™ฃ๐™˜๐™š Chalvar does not hold back- you want to listen to this one! We talk about his origins and jump right into conversations around the influence of race in classical dance roles. We chat about his joy in joining the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, the experience of fatigue and injury as he navigated his performances, and also the lessons of embracing the your unique qualities as a dancer. Lastly, we chat about value of mentorship and self -advocacy in the dance world. ๐™„๐™‚: @๐™˜๐™๐™ก๐™ซ๐™ง๐™ข๐™ฃ๐™ฉ๐™ง๐™ค

๐˜ฝ๐™ง๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™œ๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™œ ๐™ก๐™ž๐™›๐™š ๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™ฉ๐™ค ๐™ฎ๐™ค๐™ช๐™ง ๐™ฌ๐™ค๐™ง๐™  ๐™ซ๐™จ ๐™ฌ๐™ค๐™ง๐™ ๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™œ ๐™ฉ๐™ค ๐™ก๐™ž๐™ซ๐™š We continue our conversation with therapist John Sovec. We talk about more viable tools to check in with where you are mentally , Nutrition and its connection to mental health and busting the myth that dancers feel alone in struggling in mental health issues. John gives us his go to resources for mental health management and touches on how to bring richness and depth to your career as a dancer. https://johnsovec.com/ IG: @johnsovectherapy

๐— ๐—ฒ๐—ป๐˜๐—ฎ๐—น ๐—œ๐—ป๐—ท๐˜‚๐—ฟ๐˜† ๐—ถ๐˜€ ๐—ป๐—ผ๐˜ ๐˜„๐—ฒ๐—ฎ๐—ธ๐—ป๐—ฒ๐˜€๐˜€, ๐—ถ๐˜โ€™๐˜€ ๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ณ๐—ผ๐—ฟ๐—บ๐—ฎ๐˜๐—ถ๐—ผ๐—ป This is such a timely conversation as we witness the 2021 Olympics in Japan and the conversations around mental health. I talk with Therapist and Coach John Sovec, who talks about how his career in theater fueled his passion to pursue his second career: therapy and coaching. He talks about the controversial but common place practice of dancing through injuries against your better judgement, rediscovering your power as a performer to shape the accepted narratives in your career and gives us amazing tools to reframe the power dynamic in the dance world to put you- the dancer - first. https://johnsovec.com/ IG: @johnsovectherapy

Redefining the Standard of Dance I continue Part #2 of our conversation with Tamisha Guy. We chat about her thoughts on the thing essential for dancer's success including the use of cross training. We also chat about changes that are necessary in the dance world regarding pay equity, opportunity and racial equity, and the economic realities of being a dancer and how it affects our choices. Instagram: @tamishaguy www.tamishaguy.com Tamishaguy@yahoo.com

Claiming Dance as a part of my life In this Episode, we get an introduction to Dance Magazineโ€™s 25 Top Dancers to Watch List in 2016 dancer Tamisha Guy. A native of Trinidad and Tobago, she also won the 2016 Princess Grace Award, and in 2017, she was named one of the Best Dancer's of the Year by Dance Europe. Tamisha talks about her entry into dance world, her experience with injuries and her unusual form of cross training: boxing! Instagram: @tamishaguy

Dancing Outside of the Box We continue our conversation with Kel as she talks more about her work with Freed of London . We chat about her entry into the company, her work with producing the 1st line of pointe shoes for dancer of color from a 90 year old company, and her role in creating a movement where dancers of colors can perform in the skin they live in. We also touch on the reluctance of industry leaders and dancers to embrace this product, and her vision for creating spaces for people that donโ€™t have access to dance in her hometown of Guyana, a place close to her heart and her heritage @kjonesdance @ms_k.jones

๐™‡๐™š๐™–๐™ง๐™ฃ๐™ž๐™ฃ๐™œ ๐™ฉ๐™ค ๐™–๐™ฅ๐™ฅ๐™ง๐™š๐™˜๐™ž๐™–๐™ฉ๐™š ๐™ฎ๐™ค๐™ช๐™ง ๐™—๐™ค๐™™๐™ฎ. We continue our conversation with Rachel Fine. Rachel talks talk about issues that the pandemic has brought with disordered eating, Her ideas on intuitive eating, and the intersectionality between body type, structure and nutrition in the dance world. She also reveals The Healthy Dancer Summer Intensive - a special intensive aimed at creating healthy, well rounded performers. https://www.instagram.com/tothepointenutrition/ https://dancenutrition.com https://dancenutrition.com/healthy-summer-intensives-2021/

Success is where opportunity meets preparation I talk with Kel Jones, The Head of Marketing of Freed of London, USA, and first woman of color to hold a major position at the 90 year old pointe shoe company. I talk to Kel about her introduction to dance, her first injury, and how an injury changed her approach to using her voice in the dance world to create positive change. @kjonesdance @ms_k.jones

๐™‰๐™ช๐™ฉ๐™ง๐™ž๐™ฉ๐™ž๐™ค๐™ฃ๐™–๐™ก ๐˜พ๐™–๐™ง๐™š ๐™›๐™ค๐™ง ๐˜ฟ๐™–๐™ฃ๐™˜๐™š๐™ง๐™จ This is the first convo with Rachel Fine, registered dietician nutritionist and creator of To The Pointe Nutrition. We talk about Rachelโ€™s experience in the dance world with injuries and the lessons she learned. We also talk how she started her journey into nutrition, and the creation of her practice born out of the experiences she had as young dancer. We also touch on how the expectations in Dance can lead to body dsymorphias, and systemic issues with food availability and oppression. Website: https://pointenutrition.com/ Instagram: @tothepointenutrition

This Artform is mine I continue my conversation with Cassa Pancho, Founder and Artistic Director of Ballet Black. We talk about the role Ballet Blackโ€™s dancers played in creating the Bronze line for Freed of London, the first line of pointe shoes for dancers of color with this 90 year old company. We also chat about the importance of representation in the need for ballet to evolve, and the need to change performative activism in the dance world. Website: https://balletblack.co.uk/ Instagram: @originalballetblack

Creating space for Black Dancers in Ballet In the first episode of Season 3, I talk with Founder and Artistic Director of Ballet Black, Cassa Pancho. Cassa talks about her introduction to the dance world, and launches into an intellectually inquisitive examination of the British Ballet world through the lens of race. Cassa talks about her process of creating a space for black dancers in Britain, highlighting the struggles and the successes. We also talk about her thoughts of breaking the stereotypes of black bodies in dance thru her work with the company. Website: https://balletblack.co.uk/ Instagram: @originalballetblack

Here's the intro to Season 3. New times, new conversations to be had. I'm talking about all the Elephants in the room this season. Tune in!

We have our last convo with Terry Hyde, Pyschotherapist for dancers based in London. We talk about approaches to handling the stresses of dance, changes due to Covid-19, and tools for dancers to combat their issues, and how he is helping the dance world cope and move forward during this difficult time.

On this podcast, we talk a lot about physical injuries, but what about our thoughts, and how we feel? In this episode, I talk with Psychotherapist Terry Hyde, about how he has created a niche practice offering mental health services for dancers . Terry talks about his dancer journey and how he has created a practice that helps dancers with their mental health.

We continue our conversation with Dr. Amanda Olson, a pelvic floor physical therapist. We talk about her thoughts on the relationship of the medical world and patients regarding pelvic floor issues, how dancers can look for a pelvic floor physical therapist, and things dancers should be aware of regarding pelvic floor injuries and issues.

In this episode I chat with Dr. Amanda Olson, a pelvic floor physical therapist that has found her calling and passion through her own personal experience. We chat about the challenging events that lead her to explore pelvic floor physical therapy, and how this applies to dancers.

Felicia Avalos joins us for Part 2. We talk about the necessary evolution that dancers go through to evolve. We talk about her honest take on skin color in dance and her acceptance of that with race relations. We also chat about the the intersection of self acceptance, using our unique voice and stepping into the world as an artist. We end with Feliciaโ€™s sage advice on being true to yourself in your dance journey.

Felicia Avalos joins us for part 1 of our talk. We talk about her first injury with heel pain, and the importance of changing your training and self care as your body ages. We chat about her use of Muay Tai and Brazilian Jujitsu to complement her dance and artistry.

Get your pens and pencils out!! We continue Oniekaโ€™s refreshing take on dance injuries in Part 3 We talk about the resources she used surrounding her spinal injuries she gives her sage advice of finding the right medical provider that understands dancers. We also talk about her sage advice about taking care of your product - make sure you catch the quick fire round!

In part 2 we talk about how Oniekaโ€™s thoughts on how we can show up as your authentic self to become an intellectual asset and self-advocate to your product - your body. We also chat about the innovation and detriments that have come to the dance world because of COVID -19.

We talked about her dance experience coming to the US , standing out as a black, Caribbean woman in dance. We chatted about her first injury and how it connects with the business of the arts . We touch on the culture of hiding injuries and the detriments to dancers and their careers.We also touch about unionization that affords dancers protection in the case of injury.

Bill continues his story talking about his path in teaching, that came from a job that he didnโ€™t get. He talks about his thoughts on making great teachers, and the importance of experience and expertise in creating great teachers.

Bill starts his first episode describing his very unique entry into the dance and broadway world. He also paints a very different experience than my other guests - he talks about being injured but not seeing medical help.

Akua Noni Parker continues her conversation about the things we rarely talk about as dancers - cross training, sleep, rest, and nutrition. She talks about how nutrition has affected her career and her love for it has evolved into @cookingwithku.

I had the honor of interviewing Ms Parker on the first stop on her last tour with the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater.. In the beginning of this interview, she goes over her beginnings of her 20 year dance career. She talks about one of her first injuries , where she had to miss a performance.

How do you deal with pain when no-one believes you? How do you deal with having a bad teacher ? Jennifer finishes off this episode talking about her back injury and her difficult journey to healing, without her support system believing that she was in pain. Jennifer expands on her thoughts of more education for dancers and dance educators, injury prevention for dancers and the psychology behind working through an injury!

Jennifer DePaola, Founder of DoctorsforDancers.com, joins us for Part 1 of her interview. She talks about her experience as a young dancer, and the care she received for an ankle sprain. She also talks about how teachers and choreographers can be held to better standards in teaching dance that is health conscious, and the need for different tools for parents to judge if a dance school is best for their child.

To kick off Season 2 of Dancing Around Elephants, I reflect a bit on where we are today - in the midsts of a pandemic - and how it has ushered a season of change. I discuss the revolution of thought that dancers should be going through regarding their injuries, and I extend a personal invite to dancers to start a revolution of their own.

In this last episode, I wrap things up in discussing all the stories you've heard for the past couple of weeks. I also go thru the top 3 persons you need on your dance team as a professional dancer to make sure you are successful in coming out on the other sides of injuries, and the importance of mental health in getting to the end.

If you know all the rules, then you know how to bend them! Maleek rounds up this last episode talking about the economics of dance. We talk about how dancers can make sure they are compensated for their time and talent, and discuss what is needed for the longevity as a dancer, choreographer, and as an artist.

Maleek Washington continues his story of overcoming a staph infection that threatened his dance career and life. Then he travels thru time to take us through his amazing comeback and his journey into becoming an artiste. He talks about his experience with Camille A. Brown Dance Company and the culture of support that is unique to his dance company experiences.

"Be vocal, youโ€™re not the first to have this injury, they have seen this before." What happens when you fall into the grey area of being injured over and over again? You figure out new ways to move and become a master of your craft! That is exactly what happened with Maleek Washington

We go into the 2nd episode where Katherine talked about her knee surgeries and important nuggets to pass that time, and keep you mentally engaged. She also goes thru dance essentials for success, and why a ballet dancer needs more skills than just ballet to present a relatable conversation to the audience.

In this episode we get introduced to Katherine Horrigan, dancer, teacher, choreographer.. She walked us through the start of her professional career, and gives her sage advice on getting your foot in the door for professional dance companies.

In this episode I talk about why dancers need to speak up and foster better relationships with their medical providers and teachers. Placing these professionals on your team will only help to give you a career that has longevity and success!

We cover contract negotiations, job opportunities and the hidden talents that dancers have that makes them a key asset to others.

In this episode, we talk bout her gems about retirement and quality of life, and the way she has dealt with her new diagnosis.

Like most high level athletes , dancers devote extraordinary amounts of time perfecting their art. But what happens when your career ends? Zara talks about coping with difficult times, and trying to catch up with life  as it moves while youโ€™re on stage. 

In this episode, we talk about some key differences between contemporary dance and Broadway that makes Broadway an animal of its own.

In this episode, Zara talks about a persistent injury that resulted in Joint Rejuvenation Surgery. She talks about her experience with surgery, and how she mentally dealt with having to stop dancing for 4 months.

In this episode, we get introduced to Zara Bartels, a dance prodigy that travelled from her small island of Trinidad and Tobago, to touch and master dance in 3 major continents, including the US.

Charlotte talks about her experience with this injury, things she learned, her US based teachers that had words of wisdom and the advice she has for dancers going thru this type of injury

Learn about how Dancing Around Elephants came about and what to look forward to. Also learn a bit about your host Dr. Danelle Dickson, her background in dance and why dancers should be called performing athletes instead of performing artists.