The September 2013 issue for Just Dance! Magazine included my article on The Next Step, a reality-style show about an elite group of competitive dancers that airs on the Family Channel in Canada. Some of the cast members may be familiar to you:
- Jordan Clark (Giselle) won season four of So You Think You Can Dance Canada.
- Tamina Pollack-Paris (Tiffany) made it to the Top 16 on season one of So You Think You Can Dance Canada.
- Lamar Johnson (West) can be seen daily on TVO’s Pop It! teaching young viewers dance moves.
The article is in a Q&A format because so many of the answers I got were exactly what I think I would have wanted to hear as a young dancer over 20 years ago. For example, it’s okay to enjoy some chocolate when you’re having a really tough day. It’s also okay to take your time to decide what you want to do with your adult life. (One cast member who had been studying dance for awhile didn’t decide until the end of high school that she wanted to dance professionally.)
The cast of The Next Step is filming season two right now, so I was very thankful that almost everyone was able to get back to me. The Family Channel publicist was also hugely helpful in coordinating everything. (I don’t want to give out her name here: she’s already busy enough herself.)
Of the 13 cast members, 11 had enough time to respond to these questions:
- What do you love about working on a television show? What do you find challenging?
- What’s it like working together?
- What might readers be surprised to learn about you?
- What gets you through a really tough day?
- What did you learn at your dance studio that’s important to you as a working dancer?
- Any general advice you’d like to pass on?
This article highlights some of the advice the cast of The Next Step had for young dancers. If you’d like a copy for your young dancer at home or your studio, you can easily order one online for $4 or get a year’s subscription (six issues) for $20, whether you’re in Canada, the US, or abroad.