Disney's The Next Step Live on Stage: Meet the Choreographers
By Leah Maclean
The Next Step is the fictional Disney Channel TV series which follows the lives of the champion dancers from The Next Step dance studio. Shot in mockumentary style, the young dancers of A-Troupe strive to win a series of dance competitions, all the while dealing with their own dramas and relationships. The series was a hit with millions of young teenagers worldwide, including Australia and New Zealand. Following the success of their live on stage Wild Rhythm tour last year, The Next Step are returning to our shores during New Zealand Dance Week with an all new dance spectacular.
Disney Channel Presents The Next Step – Live on Stage features ten of the cast members from the Canadian TV series in a 90-minute stage show made up of solos, duets, trios and group numbers. This hotly anticipated event gives The Next Step fans an opportunity to immerse themselves in the live experience, and get up close and personal with the acting/dance talents of the hit series. Choreographers and The Next Step cast members, Jordan Clark and Trevor Tordjman, are both enthusiastic about the experience of performing live and mark the differences between studio filming and the live production. “The energy you get from a live audience is huge!” says Trevor. “When we’re filming, it’s like we’re in our world,” explains Jordan. “[With filming] we can be perfectionists because if we aren’t happy with it, we can go back and try the scene again.”
Both performers started dancing at a young age and fell in love with the art-form. Trevor started out dancing in his mother’s studio at the age of four and began to gain exposure after appearing in several music videos and commercials, then in 2012 he was cast as James in The Next Step. Jordan is a graduate of Vlad’s Dance Company in Ontario, Canada and was crowned ‘Canada’s Favourite Dancer’ in the 2011 season of So You Think You Can Dance Canada. She joined the cast of The Next Step as Giselle in 2012, “I had no idea it was going to turn out to be this massive show!” she explains. New Zealand audiences can expect an interactive and high energy performance from The Next Step dancers in a multitude of dance forms such as hip-hop and contemporary; plus, the show features Australian guest hosts, Adam Roberts and Ashleigh Wells, from the Disney Channel series Hanging with Adam & Ash.
“In total, we dance about eight hours in rehearsal,” explains Jordan. “And it’s a different creative process every time,” adds Trevor. The Next Step are a dedicated team unit with their long and physically challenging days and choreographic collaborations and contributions. Both Trevor and Jordan express their gratitude for the team they work with and the fans they get to meet along the way. As the lead choreographers, they are a well suited team with similar creative processes and, not to mention, the same dream to have been able to perform with Michael Jackson. “I have to be inspired by a song. A song or piece of music that speaks to me and sparks a vision of choreography in my head,” explains Trevor. Jordan finds herself listening to songs over and over again until one inspires a concept, “after that the movement will start coming through”. Both admit that choosing a preferred dance style is near impossible.
With their expansive dance experience and time working on The Next Step, varying forms of dance have entered their lives, as well as a number of challenges. Whether it is the frustration of being unable to learn a sequence as quickly or the idea of being self-employed, Trevor and Jordan stress the importance of not giving up, particularly for young budding dancers. “Always keep pushing. If you want something stay focused, concentrate on what you need to do to make it happen,” says Jordan; a mantra which originates from advice given to her throughout her career: When you’re tired and you’ve had enough, keep going. Both performers intend on remaining steadfast in that advice by pushing on in their careers and developing new skills; as an aside Jordan alludes to a jewellery line she has coming out and Trevor plans on one day creating and starring in his own work.
Trevor and Jordan will be performing alongside fellow cast mates Victoria Baldesarra, Lamar Johnson, Brittany Raymond, Isaac Lupien, Myles Erlick, Briar Nolet, Isaiah Peck and Shelby Bain. The tour kicks off in Christchurch and travels through to Wellington and Auckland from the 26-30 April.
Thanks to Live Nation, DANZ are thrilled to offer readers a 15% discount on The Next Step tickets!