Stories about: Performing Artist Athlete Program

A gymnast gets her spring back

Mikayla, who was treated for hip avulsion fracture, balances upside down on the uneven bars.
Mikayla on the uneven bars at age 11, two years before she mastered the pirouette [PHOTOS COURTESY OF THE COMEIRO FAMILY]

In order to master the pirouette, Mikayla Comeiro drew on many of the strengths she’d developed as a competitive gymnast: hours of practice, determination and physical stamina. To perform a pirouette, the gymnast swings herself into a handstand on the uneven bars and walks her hands around in a circle, rotating her entire body while remaining upside down.

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Returning to the stage after show-stopping wrist pain

Bruno on stage after surgery for cubital tunnel syndrome
PHOTOS COURTESY OF BRUNO SILVA

Bruno Silva can’t imagine his life without music. He has been playing bass guitar since he was 12 years old and performs at least once a week, often more. Born in Japan to Brazilian parents, Bruno has lived and performed in England, Brazil, Spain and the United States. He started out playing along to bands like Metallica and Megadeath. Then he found jazz and has focused on that style of music ever since.

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Nicole’s Story: Dancing my way through pain

Nicole Zizzi dancer hip dysplasia PAO Thriving blog lead image
PHOTO COURTESY OF MICKEY WEST PHOTOGRAPHY

Dance is my life passion.

I’ve spent more than 15 hours a week dancing for most of my 26 years — except for a period of time the past few years, when hip pain forced me to stop.

We dancers usually don’t express our pain; in fact, we almost like to be in pain because it means we’re working hard and improving. So, when I woke up one morning two years ago and I couldn’t lift my left leg, I knew something was very wrong. This pain was too intense to ignore.

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Helping Olympian Aimee Buchanan get back on her skates

Aimee Buchanan, who had surgery to remove a bursa, performs a Biellmann spin at the 2018 winter Olympics

Like many young athletes, Aimee Buchanan dreamed of going to the Olympics. But unlike most athletes, she skated her way to success, overcoming multiple injuries along the way. A dual American-Israeli citizen, Aimee competed for Israel’s figure skating team at the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea. She placed 10th in the women’s short program team event and ultimately helped her team finish ahead of both South Korea and France.

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