10 Quick Questions with Nia Sioux Frazier
In the earliest seasons of Lifetime's "Dance Moms," Nia Sioux Frazier was the underdog. She was constantly overlooked by a certain shall-not-be-named teacher, and had a seemingly permanent spot on the bottom of the show's infamous pyramid.
It wasn't until Nia and her mom Holly decided to pursue other creative outlets—singing! music videos! live performances!—that the 15-year-old dancer (she turns 16 next week) got the spotlight she wanted. Today, Nia's a fan favorite far beyond "Dance Moms": Last year, she made her off-Broadway debut in Trip of Love, and next month she'll take her famous death drop on the road with WilldaBeast and Janelle Ginestra as part of the team's #FOLLOWME tour. Catch Nia & co. when the tour kicks off July 28 in L.A.—and get more from her right here, right now. #slay
1. What's the first thing you do when you wake up in the morning and the last thing you do before bed every night?
As soon as I wake up, I automatically check my phone. So much can happen overnight, and I want to stay connected. At night, I make sure I put my phone on the charger because I need all the battery life I can get. I cannot start my day at less than 100 percent.
2. What are three things you eat every day?
Egg whites, chicken or fish, and fruit
3. What are three things you can't dance without?
Music, strength, and a hair tie
4. In your very expert opinion, what's the best dance movie of all time?
My all-time favorite movie is The Wiz. I love the choreography and music throughout the movie, especially the scene featuring the song "A Brand New Day." I also recently fell in love with La La Land and would love to do a movie like that one day, with such incredible dancing.
5. If you were given an hour to take class from ANY instructor—living or dead—who would you choose?
That's so hard. Probably Michael Jackson. But Misty Copeland and Debbie Allen are high on my list, too!
6. What's your favorite place you've ever performed?
Performing my first song, "Star In Your Own Life," in Federation Square, Australia, was incredible.
7. What songs are in heavy rotation on your playlist right now?
"Symphony" by Clean Bandit, "Nights With You" by MO, and "Slow Down Love" by Louis the Child
8. Other than dance, what's your favorite way to work out?
I enjoy working out and staying fit. I routinely walk on the treadmill, in addition to working out with my trainer several times a week.
9. What's your favorite way to spend a Sunday?
My perfect Sunday includes relaxing, enjoying a delicious brunch, and staying home with my family.
10. What has been the single greatest moment in your dance career so far?
There have been so many amazing moments, it's hard to pick one. Any situation where I'm learning more about dance will help me with my dance career. Learning from Laurieann Gibson, Cheryl Burke, and James Walski (Trip of Love director & choreographer) would be some of my greatest highlights. They were huge moments for me, and the lessons learned are helpful in life and dance.
Kalani Hilliker made "Dance Moms" fans sit up a little straighter when she first appeared on "Abby's Ultimate Dance Competition" back in 2013. The then–12-year-old ballerina had charisma, she had sass—and, wow, did she have technique! Abby Lee Miller, the show's infamous host, saw Kalani's star potential from the start, saving her from elimination and ultimately inviting her to perform alongside Maddie Ziegler on Season 4 of "Dance Moms." "I was never supposed to be on 'Dance Moms' beyond that one performance," says Kalani, now 16, but she ended up staying on the show for the whole season—and the following three. "It was my first time, but not my last time, causing drama. And it was also the first time I got to meet the other dancers, who have become like sisters."
You may already know Apolla Shocks are able to replace your current footwear and dance shoes because of the durability, aesthetics, and traction, BUT there are many other reasons to ALWAYS keep a pair in your dance bag. BESIDES wearing them in class or onstage:
Move over, Sergei Polunin*: There's a new ballet heartthrob in town.
Well, not "new," exactly: The fabulously talented Isaac Hernández has been a lead principal with the English National Ballet since 2015, and previously danced with Dutch National Ballet and San Francisco Ballet. (He's also part of a distinguished dance family: You met his brother, SFB corps member Esteban, in our March issue roundup of up-and-coming danseurs.)
But a dreamy new video by filmmaker Ezra Hurwitz—"Despertares" [Wake Up], featuring Hernández dancing in studios and on rooftops all over NYC—makes a strong case for this beautiful dancer becoming your next ballet crush:
You probably already know the dance division at the Boston Conservatory as a top destination for contemporary dancers. But in June 2016, the Conservatory uncovered a new part of its identity when it merged with Berklee College of Music. It's a move that's opening up all kinds of new opportunities for students—especially dancers.
In an audition or onstage, knowing how to use eye contact appropriately is a total game changer. Dancers who aren't afraid to meet the eyes of judges or audience members exude a special confidence that allows them to be seen as capable, talented performers. When dancers look at the floor or around the room, though, they telegraph insecurity. Don't send your critics looking for flaws! Avoid these three no-no's and become a true master of eye contact.
Pretty much every class at L.A.'s Millennium Dance Complex features a combo set to a serious banger of a song. But not every class brings in the ACTUAL POP STAR BEHIND THE SONG to watch dancers take on that combo.
A few days ago, Demi Lovato dropped by Jojo Gomez's class at Millennium to see what Gomez had made of her hit "Sorry Not Sorry." Gomez's 🔥 choreo—and the incredible performances by some of Hollywood's best dancers/most devoted Lovatics, including Kaycee Rice—didn't disappoint.
Is there anything better than a killer dance photoshoot? OF COURSE NOT! Whether you're taking headshots, model shots, or simply images that'll slay on Instagram, dance photography makes the world a prettier place.
To make sure your next dance photoshoot is as 🔥 as you are, we asked photographer Kenneth Edwards for his dos and don'ts. Follow his advice and your dance photography future will be as bright as your "golden hour" lighting.