Get to Know D-Real from MTV’s "World of Jenks"
D-Real (Photo ©2013 Viacom International Inc.)
On the second season of the documentary TV show "World of Jenks," premiering tonight on MTV, filmmaker Andrew Jenks shadows three inspirational young people for 10 episodes. We’re most intrigued by 21-year-old street dancer D-Real. From one of the most violent cities in America—Oakland, CA—D-Real has used dance to overcome many tragedies, including the deaths of two of his brothers. Here, Dance Spirit talks with D-Real about his experience on the show.
Dance Spirit: Tell us about when Jenks first contacted you about the show.
D-Real: It was one of those phone calls you wait for. As a struggling artist, I’ve always hoped someone would see my story. When I got the call, I just started dancing, gliding around the room while I was on the phone. My family was shocked when I told them about being on "World of Jenks." They'll finally get to see I’m helping out my community and doing a lot of good.
DS: What was the first day of filming like?
DR: I wasn’t nervous, but I was overwhelmed. Where I come from, when you see cameras on the street, it’s always because they're doing a newscast. So I was surprised at all the things that go into taping a show—things you don’t see on TV. I remember thinking, “This is amazing, but I wish my partner, my brother, were here.” He’s the reason I know I should be dancing.
DS: What was it like to work with Jenks?
DR: He’s a really smart, cool dude. The wisdom he gave me was just what I needed. He’s from a different world than I am, so when we exchanged ideas, it made me see things from a new perspective.
DS: What message do you want to get across to viewers?
DR: I want people to know that there’s no obstacle you can’t overcome. Dancing is one of the hardest fields to be in, but now that I’m on the show, I feel like I’ve made it. I’ve been homeless, and I’ve lost brothers and cousins. But what I’m doing now is becoming a better man for my kid, my fiancée and myself.
Tune in tonight at 11 pm EST for the season premiere of "World of Jenks."
Getting corrections from our dance instructors is how we grow, and as students, it's important that we do our best to apply every correction right away. But sometimes—whether it's because we're in physical pain, or have a lot on our minds, or are just not paying attention—those corrections don't sink in. And from a teacher's standpoint, giving the same corrections time and time again gets old very fast. Here are 10 important corrections dance teachers are tired of giving. Take them to heart!
Summer intensive auditions can be nerve-racking. A panel of directors is watching your every move, and you're not even sure if you can be seen among the hundreds of other dancers in the room. We asked five summer intensive directors for their input on how dancers can make a positive impression—and even be remembered next year.
We always love a good halftime performance. And we LIVE for halftime performances involving talented kids. (Fingers and toes crossed that Justin Timberlake follows Missy Elliott's lead and invites some fabulous littles to share his Super Bowl stage.)
So obviously, our hearts completely melted for 5-year-old Tavaris Jones. Tavaris may have just started kindergarten, but during Monday night's game between the Cleveland Cavaliers and Golden State Warriors, the Detroit native danced with the panache of a veteran pro at halftime.
The coolest place she's ever performed:
I'd have to say the Super Bowl. The field was so cool, and Katy Perry was right there. And there were so many eyes—definitely the most eyes I've ever performed for!
Something she's constantly working on:
My feet. I'm flat-footed, so I'm always hearing, 'Point your toes!' And I'm like, 'I am!'
My hair! That, and a pair of leggings with a T-shirt or tank top.
In our "Dear Katie" series, former NYCB soloist Kathryn Morgan answers your pressing dance questions. Have something you want to ask Katie? Email email@example.com for a chance to be featured!
For a long time, I was the strongest dancer at my studio. But this year there's a new girl in my class who's very talented, and my teacher's attention has definitely shifted to her. I'm trying not to feel jealous or discouraged, but it seems like my whole dance world has changed. Help!
In the dance world, Mandy Moore has long been a go-to name, but in 2017, the success of her choreography for La La Land made the rest of the world stop and take notice. After whirlwind seasons as choreographer and producer on both "Dancing with the Stars" and "So You Think You Can Dance," she capped off the year with two Emmy Award nominations—and her first win. Dance Magazine caught up with her to find out how she's balancing all of her dance projects.
Marzia Memoli may be the Martha Graham Dance Company's newest dancer, but her classical lines and easy grace are already turning heads. Originally from Palermo, Italy, Memoli started studying at age 16 at the Academy of Teatro Carcano in Milan. Later, she attended the Rudra Béjart School in Lausanne, Switzerland, before heading to NYC in 2016 to join MGDC. This month, she'll perform The Rite of Spring in the Martha Graham Studio Series in NYC, and tour with the company in Florida. Read on for the dirt.