Working on my Hip Hop.

Quick video of me in class with Cera Byer and also, I’m dancing with Sarah Bush!

I mean name-dropping is obnoxious but having a dance experience with a Bay legend gave me FAN GIRL FEELS sooooo sorry not sorry. 😀

People who are skilled in this dance style amaze and inspire me. I have loved all that I’ve been exposed to, and taking classes in hip hop at New Style Motherlode has done nothing but work me, push me, and make me better. I’ve taken with Momo and Shania, and worked a little with Corey Action and Teela Shine, and they are all 100% body pos/fat girl approved.

I’m going to make a master list of all the classes I’ve eaten up in the Bay Area, for the curious.

Here’s our snippet:

Note that Cera’s class is NOT running right now. 😦 Just FYI since the vid is a plug for the class.


When you’re the only fat one (and it’s okay!)

In the interest of updating my site, here’s a bit about performing with one of my real life dance idols Cera Byer last winter.

After my son was born, the first class I rolled into was with Cera, who isn’t always teaching so I jumped on it basically as soon as my doctors greenlighted it. (Class is on hiatus at the moment, so I’m glad I sucked all the meat off it that I could!) She is a very body positive teacher and dancer, and though there is more body diversity in her class than in many others (ballet, I’m looking at you) I’m still the size of at least two and sometimes three of the students put together. Years ago, this would have really bothered me, but dance gives me joy and sets me free so I’m at peace. I actually go full Narcissus when I catch myself in the mirror, sometimes. (My fellow emFATs have seen me do this, too, I’m sure.)

I’m pretty experienced in classes at this point, so a lot of the time I self-modify if I can’t do the step. (A single turn instead of a double, or getting to the floor a different way, for example.) Cera allows and encourages this, but also pushes me.  I love the pushes, even though they’re scary. Just last week, after her nudging, I was able to do a strength move involving very flexed knees that I thought I COULD NOT DO last year. I feel my power and I celebrate it!

Here is rehearsal of a piece I got to perform in with her class. I’m the fattest but no less fierce than anyone else up there. Seeing it makes me proud, every time.

Plus I learned how to embed video!

My Audition for So You Think You Can Dance

Like many bloggers, I got so far behind I couldn’t figure out how to re-enter my blog game. So, without further delay, here is what I experienced down in LA, in March, 2013. I had just turned 30, which is the absolute age ceiling for that show. I began training the first week of January, when the season was confirmed by Fox. Halfway through training, I learned I was expecting my first child, and thus, at the time of my audition, I was 8 weeks pregnant or so. NOT WHAT I HAD PLANNED! But it was okay. 😀

Here’s what I said on Facebook that night (with typos corrected, hopefully):

Well, I danced for the producers and I got cut, along with 80% of everyone.

No one questioned me or my fat body in any way today. No mean looks, no comments, no negativity of any kind. While I was not given a specific explanation for my cut, the narrative I believe to be true is that what I did was not a joke, and they were only choosing the truly excellent dancers and the jokes. In this body, in that space, “not a joke” is an achievement I can wear proudly.

In terms of how the day went? It was approximately 10 hours of waiting (uncomfortably) in the theater, watching the crew work really really hard at creating the not lit, not dressed look of the LA audition space that will ultimately be televised. Those roadie cases at the back of the stage we can see on TV are METICULOUSLY ARRANGED, GUYS. I had approximately 2 pounds of personal snack materials and ate approximately half of them. The last 90 minutes was in a much smaller room with a dance floor, where we watched groups of ten perform for the producing panel which included alums Sasha, Marko, Tadd, Dominic, Dmitri, Audrey, Matthew, and FUCK YEAH ALEX WONG. Watching the others was the best part. There was some truly slamming talent and I look forward to seeing them go on. I also saw a dancer take a serious knee injury from a fall in a terrifying way. I definitely had a moment of panic when I got into the small room because GIRL I DID NOT BELONG but I did my thing anyway.

Cheers to all who have been watching out for me these past 2.5 months. I am so glad to have taken advantage of my last opportunity to do SYTYCD in the best way that I could.


Looking back on that now, I’m extremely proud. I got through the day on saltines and PB, with my baby on board. At the beginning of the session, they told all of us to bring it. “Look us right in the eye. Now or never.” And I did.

Here is what I prepared for the day: (Choreography by Katrin Auch.)

In reality, the cattle call was a 30 second improv to a random, vaguely genre-aligned song. Mine, as someone applying under the “contemporary” genre, was “Send in the Clowns.” I had my favorite sweatshirt on, and I loved it.

Since February 2013….

I’ll be catching everyone up on my doings in the next few posts. I’ve been AWOL from the dance world for the past year because I was pregnant, birthing, and post-partum! I’ve been back in class since December, and I’m about to hit the stage this Friday for the first time since June.

Modernity, Cross-Training, Photogenesis, Collaboration, and a Tease.

Hi folks! Lots going on in alannadances world, so I thought I’d do a comprehensive update.

1) My next performance is this weekend! Short notice/poorly promoted by me, I know, but the shows have been sold out for weeks now so I’m not worried about turn-out. 😀 I will be appearing in cycle IV of Reveries and Elegies with Mary Armentrout Dance Theater as both a dancer and a vocalist. This is the second time I get to work professionally with Mary (!) and the vocal component of the show has given me the opportunity to meet and work with SF musician, composer, and sound artist Pamela Z. Being in rehearsal with these two established, successful, and supremely creative female artists has been beyond inspiring. Wish me luck! I’ll be wearing a woman’s size M costume that somehow fits me and all the other non-fat dancers (NETTING IS MAGIC) and dancing in driveways and on fences. And sand. MODERN, Y’ALL.

Side note: Ms. Z lives in the most amazing live/work space FANTASY I’ve ever seen in real life. It’s a gorgeous all white lofted studio with a beautiful kitchen, and the kind of curated personal collection of art and music that I dream about. Gonna keep dreaming about that.

2) I just signed up for 2 new epic cross-training things. First is a course of fusion belly dance and conditioning work with my new girlcrush Cera Byer. I met this fierce diva at the very end of 2012, and her influence directly led to the founding of this website and solidified my notion that I can and should be legit because I say I am.  I can’t wait to go deep with her, seriously.

My second epic cross-training commitment is to train for my first 10k. Having established that yes, Fatty Can Run 3.1 miles, Fatty is going to try for 6.2. I will be at this race (in August) if anyone wants to sign up with me! My app of choice is Ease into 10k (for Android). I originally trained with Ease into 5k, and there is a “bridge” app but the reviews are bad so I’m going for the straight up 10k version. As I mentioned on FB, contact me if know if you want to know more about my approach to running for supersize bodies.

3) I have a date with Lilia Schwartz of babymoon photography coming up in March. Lilia approached me about being a subject for part of a personal project she’s doing about fat bodies, and of course I said yes! I am so excited to have some beautiful, movement-y photos to cherish for myself and share with the world. Fatties on film, yo. Powerful stuff.

4) My SYTYCD audition is 1 month from today!!!!!!! WHAT. I’ve been working with Katrin Auch in LA remotely via the wonder of technology. In addition to her other awesome skills in the field of design, Kat is a detailed and musically lush lyrical choreographer who offered to create an audition piece for me that will “show me off” properly. The choreo is complete and I’m currently in rehearsal for it every week. Working with Kat has been terrific, and it makes me feel so good to know that my community is interested in this audition process, however it ends up. I’m pretty sure I will be recycling my fierce outfit from “Hurts So Good” because it’s just that hot. 😀


5) I’m developing my first ever professional choreography for a local (AWESOME) burlesque artist. I’m not going to reveal deets right now because the work is for her and she will decide the terms of its reveal,  but I just can’t stay quiet about how proud I am of the project and how glorious it’s going to be. OMG.

That’s my update folks! I’m a busy bee, for sure.

Yours in adipose-passion,


Affaires de coeur at Fatty Affair.

My next performance is this weekend!

Deets are here:

I will be dancing my contemporary solo “Hurts So Good” and appearing with emFATic DANCE in a jazz number.

“Hurts So Good” is an expression directly from my fat heart. As I mentioned at its debut back in October, I will be attempting to love myself and every member of my audience as I dance. Sounds a bit woo-woo when I write it down, but I had that goal in mind when I was on stage, and I could feel it. I could feel the emotion, I could feel the audience. It was amazing. Hoping to get to that place again. All I can do is try.

It is the first time my bio will lead folks back here. I am a dancer; with others, and on my own.


My very first post on my new site is this: I am auditioning for season 10 of So You Think You Can Dance, which some may know is my first true dance love. The show led me to seek out dance classes way back in 2007, and this adult fat dancer was born.

I’ll be hitting the last of the audition cities, Los Angeles, on March 22. My audition piece will be an excerpt from a solo I prepared and debuted last fall, and will be performing again at the end of the month.

To prepare, I will be combining my dance class schedule (4 classes plus private studio time) which I’ve been working for the past 3 months with my running training schedule (3x/week for 30 mins) from the months before that. Plus strength training. Sounds like a lot, right? Daily, it won’t really be that much, but I will have to listen very closely to my beloved body so I can avoid injury.

I’ll post my training schedule soon so you all can follow it and me.  😀

Yours in fattitude,