Vegas Baby! The JabbaWockeeZ' Sin City Premiere

You probably know the JabbaWockeeZ as the season one winners of "America's Best Dance Crew." Since then, this group of 7 guys has kept busy, appearing as guest performers on "Dancing with the Stars" and "So You Think You Can Dance" and touring with New Kids on the Block and the Jonas Brothers. TheirJabbawockeez theatrical style, emphasized by white gloves and masks, is best experienced live--and now's your chance. The JabbaWockeeZ' full-length show, MÜS.I.C. (pronounced muse-eye-see), opens tonight for a 20-day run at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. DS spoke with crew member Jeff "Phi" Nguyen about the JabbaWockeeZ newest endeavor.

Dance Spirit: The show is described as the "story of inspiration." What's the narrative you tell?
Phi: It's the story of our group. You learn where we came from and what got us to where we are today. It's portrayed through dance and music, and we incorporate bits of narration. There's also a light in the show that represents our friend Gary [Kendall, a crew member who passed away in 2007]. He was a major influence on our group: In MÜS.I.C., that light floats around so that he's a character throughout the whole show.

DS: How did you come up with the idea for the show?
Phi: We wanted to show our muse. Music is a huge part of what we do. It inspires us.

DS: What sort of music will audience hear in MÜS.I.C.?
Phi: It's an eclectic mix. There are a lot of DJ mixes, but we also use "Hotel California" by The Eagles and Phil Collins' "In the Air Tonight." We chose anything that made us move. If you're a fan of music--from hip hop to classic rock--you'll be a fan of the show.

DS: What sorts of audio-visual effects are used?
Phi: It's a conglomerate of Cirque du Soleil, Blue Man Group and traditional street dance crew freestyling. There will also be videos and little acting skits that will help tell our story.

DS: How is MÜS.I.C. different from the JabbaWockeeZ' previous work?
Phi: It's different because it's all our show. It's not someone telling us what to do, giving us specific songs to work with or a challenge to fulfill. We have 90 minutes to express what we've gone through. Hopefully the audience will be able to relate to us through our music and dance.

DS: Do you have a favorite moment in the show?
Phi: There's a Michael Jackson skit, a tribute to the Jackson 5. I grew up listening to them so, for me, that's my favorite part. It's just a fun number--we throw on some Afros and get down!

Photo courtesy JBWKZ

Latest Posts

Meet the dancers of MDC3: Madi Smith, Diego Pasillas, and Emma Mather (left to right). Photo by Joe Toreno. Hair by Marina Migliaccio and makeup by Lisa Chamberlain, both for the Rex Agency.

Meet MDC3: The "World of Dance" Winners Who Defied the Odds

In March 2020, the same day the "World of Dance" cast got word that production would be shutting down due to a global pandemic, MDC3 artists Madison (Madi) Smith, Diego Pasillas and Emma Mather stood shoulder to shoulder onstage, bracing to hear the final results of the competition. The champion title and $1 million prize money were within reach, decided entirely by the three celebrity judges sitting in front of them. As their competitor's scores dropped from the lips of Derek Hough, Jennifer Lopez and Ne-Yo at roughly 2 percentage points below their own, viewers watched realization dawn. MDC3's mouths dropped into gigantic Oh's before their hands slapped over their faces in disbelief. Sparklers shot up while confetti rained down, and the announcer shouted, "MDC3, you are the winner of 'World of Dance'!"

It was an impressive accomplishment for any group of dancers, let alone three teenagers who'd faced rejection from the show three times over. Despite their youth (Madi is 18, Diego is 17 and Emma is 16), this moment was hard earned through years of dedicated patience.

Keep Reading SHOW LESS
Mason Evans assisting at New York City Dance Alliance in Orlando, FL (Evolve Photo & Video, courtesy Mason Evans)

5 Dancers Share What It's Really Like to Return to Competitions Right Now

For the first time since the coronavirus hit the U.S., competitions and conventions are meeting in-person once again (brimming with safety precautions, of course), and dancers couldn't be more thrilled.

We asked five standout comp kids about their recent experiences attending competitions around the country—and how they're taking advantage of these long-lost opportunities.

Keep Reading SHOW LESS
Because the future of Black dance is happening right now (Braylon Browner photographed by Rhiannon Lee, courtesy Braylon Browner)

Celebrating Black Futures Month: 4 Up-and-Coming Black Dancers Making History Right Now

Throughout the month of February, many Americans celebrate Black History Month, a period of the year dedicated to honoring the contributions of Black figures to American culture and society.

The lesser-known Black Futures Month, which is also celebrated in February—and often in conjunction with BHM—looks to art and artists to envision an equitable future for Black Americans. At Dance Spirit, we're celebrating #BlackFuturesMonth by spotlighting four young Black dancers whose dance journeys are proving that the future of Black dance is bright.

Keep Reading SHOW LESS

Editors' Picks

Enter the Cover Model Search