Tony “G” is a professional choreographer, creative director, casting director and producer from LA. He has choreographed for many collegiate dance teams, the NBA & NFL, and is currently co-producing, choreographing, supervising and finishing up the latest installment for the “BRING IT ON” franchise. His past projects include choreography for national commercials including Pepsi, Nabisco, Dr. Pepper, and Target. Here, he answers a few questions about the industry for Jo & Jax!
Q: Tony, what do you love most about dance?
A: I love the movement and the feeling you get when you watch, learn or do. I’m not talking emotions: I’m talking about the goose bumps, the stomach ache, the tingles, the rush and the ability to just be. Dance in my eyes has so many forms. Whether you are trained, self-taught via social media, learning steps or freeform. The beauty of dance is limitless and more than the definition of the word.
Q: What do you look for when casting dancers?
A: The newbie Tony G would look for the best performer and the most talented. But the Tony today casts 100% different. If you have some training or form of dance style, then come in and bring your “A” game. Work ethic, common sense and drive make a good first impression. Show me that you can listen and can follow basic direction. Then I know I can form you to the needs of the business and the style I’m teaching. I no longer care how talented you are or how big your resume is. If you are tall, short, beautiful, big or muscular, it has nothing to do what I’m looking for. There is a beauty in how you switch lines in a audition, how you place your personal belongings in the room. Did you dress the part asked of you? Small things like that get my attention like nobodies beeswax. It’s not your usual casting process, but I believe if you have a good sense of timing and some rhythm you can dance all genres. Leave the stylization to the choreographer and come in and do what is asked of you.
Q: What is the most inspiring project you’ve worked on?
A: Well I can say I have a few, but let’s talk current. I recently was hired as a dancer for a new Netflix show choreographed by Cris Judd. Taking the job or even being asked was the last thing I thought anyone wanted me to do. My mind and body was saying NOPE. Next thing you know I’m heading into a week of rehearsals. Cris gave me some pointers of coming back in front of the camera and gave me a broader outlook as to why to take this gig. His words, his approach, his swag and the way he taught- they were 1000% different then what I would do or try to achieve. These small moments of learning from someone other then myself and seeing someone else’s knowledge of dance was magnificent. Everyday I was inspired to come in, report, learn, do my job, and to listen. It was hard to do since I’m usually a leader. Yet, what a blessing in disguise…to be so inspired by someone else.
Q: What project are you currently working on?
A: Im getting ready for summer dance camps and teaching for the NFL dance teams for the next month. I currently am casting for ‘Sprint’ and working on staging projects for the new Youtube Red. That’s coming out this summer on August 29th as well as the sixth installment of Bring It On on Netflix.