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Huddle Up with Gus
Huddle Up with Gus

Episode · 2 years ago

DJ Smart

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

One of the world's most talented dancer's DJ Smart joins the huddle. He talks; growing up in Detroit, working with Cher on tour, and also appearing on "So You Think You Can Dance?". See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.

I am former NFL quarterback Guspora. Iplayed quarterback fifteen years in the NFL. This is my show called huddle upwith Gus each week I team up with my longtime friend Dave Higer, and wetalked with guests about how sports shaped their lives. Pro Athletes,business executives, community leaders, everyone has a story to tell aboutsports. We invite you to huddle up with gus this week in the huddle. Not everygreat athlete ends up in the NFL, the NBA or even the Olympics. Some take adifferent path. Our next guest is one of the world's greatest dancers. Pleasewelcome into the huddle DJ SMART Dave. We have a great guest on today. Youtalk about Sepeor, athletics, Ityou, know, there's no more superiorthan a dancer and somebody that can do what Dj does so today we have DJ smartin the huddle with us and I think we're going to have greatconversation to find out about his life, and you know how he got to where he istoday because of sports, so DJ. Thank you for coming into huddle. We reallyappreciate it so where we always start is when you were growing up, I think yougrew up in Detroit. Is that correct a then moter city motor city? I playedthere one year yeah for the Lions. What yeah! So? What area of Detroit didyou grow up I' moving around a lot but for I primarily SOLPABOS TCOG? Okay, sowhen you were growing up, was there an influence in your life that reallystarted you in sports, because I think we saw a Davou saw that Dj you played basketball. WAS IT andtrack yeah my family, my mom wis, that kind of a Tomboy and M my dad,obviously lake for and Su as well just for fun, but my mom, she wa Jepskis.She Played Basketball Fokin a lot of my family and I was just a very active kids, so Igot into basketball and then I want to roun track and then I got in to bleakblub. I just try anything. I just wanted to jo be busy, and then my knee started getting really weirdand my doctor was like or not supposed todance and do chack. So you have to pick one like it's kind of con of rebucted,so I was like, I guess, I'll, just dance hin. So like what? How old were you when youstarted dancing? I mean I was always vancing sociallylike at parties and stuff, but I started training ormally yet well, okay,where did you train when you were in Detroit? I started a Vance studio called detor, Vance Ener,and then I switchd to another one, often I I toiban studio and that wasupside of school during school. I went to an art school starting in the fifthgrade and I studying dance there as well. Owonderful, so did your parents. You know you had a lot of things likemost of us, kids. We were into a lot of activitis, so were your parents verysupportive of everything you were doing, because you know you usually choose oneyeah and you you know that I really love like for me. I thought it wasbaseball and then it end up being football yeah. So for you you wereplaying a lot of sports. So how did that go with your parents? Well, it'scrazy. My parents have always had the support of, I think, theyr more so like as long ashe's staying out of trouble and as long as he's busy about bothering us justlet hem do it. Let Hem do Trak just let them do it. You know I got amazing, gread and stuffas well, so I think that was ther fivery concern. I don't think they really paid attention that much and I didn't either to I guess, atalent that I was or how gift at I was, or what my national ability was incertain areas, because it wasn't until I one of my teachers at school. She hear me thing and she had me beapart of the school's production of Bo, a Marma so embarrassing and they cas mea Semastan ijgreat time I was just thinging andancing and after that, so, like you know, he really needs to go to Aurschool. Like he's really talented, so I think that's what my parents tarted tolisten. They didn't know too much about it. I'm Oboin the family of the onlyentertainer, nobody dances. Nobody saying yomonyplays an instrument like not at all so yeah, it's Ben, an interestingjourney. I've just always kind of tried, stuff I'll, say dance chose me. Ididn't really choose it. I didn't know anything about it. Be there. I was likeguys, don't dance like guys, lay a basketball, so yeah. I guess here, Rigt O. was therepretty obvious talent right from the beginning, though, like you said yourparents didn't really pay attention to how good you were, but you knew youwere probably pretty special or Elli...

...was always shy. I I mean I knew I hadsome ability, but I didn't in my mind. I didn't know that shecould make a career out of it. I Din't think Itoud be a real thing likeactually my passion was. Writing. N Psychology. That's what I wanted to goto school for but, like I said you don't see a lot ofguys dancing, you don't it's kind of like you, think it's an obvious siething Ius like what are you really going to do? Tolihe, you can reallyplay football or you can really be a news reporter, but you know I think, w. We just continue to the continue to allow me to do what Iloved, and I think I surpised myself, and I surprised that so did you have anidol like dis as there somebody you looked up to and dance that you reallywanted to be like or follow. I didn't. I was always I mean when I was younger.I started vancing because I I love watching Michael Jackson, NChammer and Janet Jackson. I would sit in the Bront of the TV all day and tryto learn the dance foods. I just I would teach myself a gre one GE fron,the video. So thosse were my idol. Flyi looked up to, but as far as actual dance idols, Ididn't know anything about it. You know I one of my teachers took meto see of an Aly for the first time and that's the first time I saw male sdancing. I was like Oh they're,incredible, like wob, I didn't know who they were or you know, or I thought maybe this is just a certaincompany where they have a lot of guys or something I didn't know that guysactually dance. So your teacher really helped you understandthat this is possible for you. This is something that you can have a goal andwork towards. She did yeah. She. I think that, as for Ol, Portis is Gitti,MEO contiget to go see it to show me like this could be you youknow this is. I really believe that you can do this and this cald be youbecause I think she saw me kind of pulling away from it, because I did. I did not like it atfirst. I really like doing hid pof and like jazz, but she made me takeeverything she's like you have to know how to go. Vallet, oter and everything-and I was just like this- is stupid- O stand on myoobut. I also don't likenot getting something it drives me. That's like, like I'm being good atsomething, so I'll just keep trying. Until I get better at it, so when you were young, what was thehardest like form of dance, that that you had to do was a ballet, oh by BarBala Artis. I always think it's so interesting Mi,I playing basketball and numerous ports and I'm, like you, know no offense toathletes, but I'm like I, don't see how they get paid millions of dollars to doall of this, because this is way harder, like I've done it and I'm, like God,Las Way Harder and people think it's just raceful, and it's like pretty youuse literally every muscle and your body, it's the hardest thing I've everdone. I don't know like how you can like try to stand on your toes. I meanI fer Li can walk down the steps, so I mean what you guys. What ballet is thisphenomenal? I mean it's the altlet as telln Dave between that and like anOlympic gymnast, it's like the ultimate athlete yeah, it's a lot harder andthen beyon, the physicality of it. The illusion of making it Apperegracefol is also ar because it's Bobe since you're dying inside. It's very I so. Is there a lot of weight liftinginvolved in ballet? Like I E N, you have to be strong to be able to do alove that yeah there's a lot of. I mean everyone. Does I mean for a malon Pesiar, like some people go to the gym, some people do their ounfivat workout or whatever I dot, but Yousa have to be strong. I Yo have to understandthe mechanics of the body, because we do a lot ofpartner, inlifting girls over our headfor bay or avlooked it both at thesame time during certain things you know, so you don't know how that works andyou're not strong about. Then it could be very dangerous ICOUL. I can imaginetha practicing of that. There's probways something mishaps. Oh yes, allthe time you have to have you haveto have strength, you have to have coordination and timing. climing is everything youknow you have to Ben your names at the same time as your partner O, you guyshave to it's kind of like a relationship like you guys have to beon the same way to prequency, which is hard because sometimes you don't knowthe person that well or sometimes you might be tired that day and thenthey're not for the opposite. So things...

...change, so you always have to have thatthat sensiive, you maybe obviously don't Git Hur so DJ. You ware obviouslyexcelling in the arts, and it sounds like your grades were excellent and youwere very well rounded. You probably had a lot of options as you're gettingolder towards going into. You know it in the college years like what made youchoose. You went to school in Philadelphia, but you probably had alot of optionss like tellt. Tell u about that process, so I originally as I excel through high school. I I learned that I could actually go tocollege for dance and possibly work in the deak industry and I aumission for I didn't audition andwithin that audition there were about thirty resentatives, I think fromthirty different coleges and universities, and at the time I wantedto go to new world school with the Arts in Florida you wanted to get out of the cod inDetroit were warm yeah. I was like I wantto go there. Iwant to go to nyu. Those were my top two choices. Well iaubition and I got Ito everysingle school, all thirty school, axeptlike Igoto, the UNIVERSITYOFR. Ieven got U Te Ard I got into everywhere. I didn't even want to go to juiat a thetime I as like. I don't want Oo. I want to go tey Oum right, Het's, go of thearts. Every schooll accept those two and I just laughe. I went to the University of the art.They gave me the Te gamvaful ride and I was like you know: Il Go tocollege and get this degree. Why not it's free and then I come back forgenuism or psychology. So that's what I did yeah so when you were in highschool. You know part of our shows abouttransitions that we all make, and you know going in in ninth grade- is verydifficult for a lot of people and kids today. What was that transition fromyou know? You started dancing, you weren't run. You know you weren't doingsports anymore, how's that transition for you going into high school andgoing through that because, as an athlete, I can understand it, and I just want to see from your world whatdebt was like for you. It was very challenging for me, a lot of things still are going intohigh school. I think it's a it's a very pipotal time in their life.Your time, afive yourself, Ye're, trying to decide what you want to dowith your life of your future, all Mu, all all trying to be cool andthe accepted as well. So that was really hard for me, because I I love to advance, but I wasn't sure ifI was going to do it professionally or liketood, and I also didn't have anyone to Comehareato, because I I meanstill so this day I kind of paid my own way an had an interesting journey, butI don't have a Danciri body like I'V, also body for football for wrestling orsomething else like dancers, guys are usually ar resulted, but long and thenand they lan towards taller guys on five. Am That's all at all, so literally everything against me, but Iwas like I just pupped it, but going through high school was very difficult. When you don't have areverence point or something to compare t to you know people have basketballplayers, they nom wat team. They want to play for the life. I I this personis my idol or different writers E. Like I love thisperson's work and Holoquala is great. You know I want to do stuff like thatmen, I'm like I don't. I just started dancing and I'm learning about all ofthis stuff, and I don't see too many lack guys dancing that like so you know, I don't know what to do from here. Yeah,it's you were groundbreaking. Yeah S are opening. You know I just kind ofW with it. So that's what I did I was just like. I never expected to go far or to do toomuch, but I was like you have a full scholarship on your platter. Why wastedgo get the dance degree and then go back to school and then you'll be donewith that and you'll do psychology or trynolism. So when you get to college you're, you know in high school you're,bubbing top of your class and most of most of the stuff we're talking about.When you get to college and thaw. Suddenly the competition levelsprobably increased significantly. There's a lot of people that are on carwith you, probably what was that like? Well, it was interesting withtranfistion. I mean I've always been a horror worker and overetiever.

For me, college was the opposite. Ithought it was challenging in a number of ways. My professors challenged me,but as far as of our dances, because I had changed inhigh school and then after school was finished, Outa go to a dance studiotrain. I was always training and alwaysworking. So when I got to college, I was like everybody's going to beamazing and you know- and there were SOM, the big advances,but it turned out to be the opposite. Everybody was like looking at me likehe's like Grat, like is amazing, which I didn't think so because I was like Ijust started and all my teachers Wuld mean, and even if you're Di tell youthat Yo were doing t's. Just if they didn't say anything, you just assumethat you were doing okay, so I didn't know how good I was cause in my mind. Iwasn't you know where they wanted me to be, but it was it was. It was verychallenging because I was one of the stronger dancers in myclass, so the level of the class the teachers were trying to get everyonesomwhere. I was which meant that glass, as worn, is challenging for me, so Ihave to go take class from which they allowed me to. I was a freshman takingclass on seniors like extra classes, so that I could be challenged which someof the seekers didn't really hak that, but the teachers allowed me to yeah. I have to EI tank. I have to takeit upon myself to get the chilles an the training and stuff on elsewhere to make use of the time but yeah whenyou're older, and you have like a rookie you so you'd have been like arookie. You know you come in and they're all sudden, given all the samekind, ofacilades and everything as an older pirt. It is hard and mentally andemotionally you have to say, okay. Why is this guy getting all the samestuff that I'm getting yeahisthis Guy Yeah who's, this guy he's Gome fromDetroit s? So what's the one question I have is: What is it like at an art school?Because I don't know this, like obviously going to college for meplayed football but also had to go to class. Is Art school kind of the samething you had? You could take your choices or was it just dance all thetime? I don't understand that world. So if you could elaborate on that for methat wo'd be great, it's pretty. I mean I guess it's pretty similar to you. Wel Nat, a Oting, but the way that itworks usually, is that you have your your regular core classes that you haveto take. So people get the misconception. We don't just DANCAL Dinyou're like you, don't have to do anything like no still have to takereligious courses and histore forces and the roll arts and SD to havea tape,anatomy in English, and I have to take petagog and all these different things. But in addition to that you take danceclasses and then the way my school works you had to also take acting, andyou hade to take vocal lessons to voice lessons whether you wanted to sing ornot, because that's a part of it all kind of Inter Reeds. You know right andthen, outside of all of those things you can decide what you want to take asan elective like if you want to take salsa or if you want to take, I don'tknow something else with him pop class or something that you like he generally within my college.CURRICULAV. You had to take everything in the first three, the first two years-bally, modern and jazz. It was a requirement. Then we Leinto yourJanioryor. You decided which Yo want to major in which was ballet or MoteorJazz, and it Shils, because you take more of that than anything else, andyou still tank other things, but your femar attention is on that one thing. So did you have an internship when youwere in college? I didn't. I was very lucky you're up to miss outaryeahvery Lucy,but it was very difficult thou. I was a full time student and then I was working ATVANC studios outside ofschool to make money into the biebooks and start teaching and stuff yeah Philly is expensive. I mean mydaughter goes: A vet SCO AF pen, so she understand what Philly is like a littlebit. I was just there over the weekend so yeah. So where is the College of Artin Philly? It's in the center city, Ole Yeah it s right on Brod, street andWalmat? Okay, I believe it's in between Temple, university and Drexel, okay,yeah. It was just that Sabrenas, it's a bricko place. Do youknow yeah, I A it was great. We went there for breakfast over the weekend,it'Syeah Yeah! No, it's a great place.

So college is it's a pretty interesting time foreveryone so did like for me. Sometimes in the summer I went back comesometimes thiy stayed at school and worked. Did you ever go back to Detroitduring college? I did usually. It was only for Hollideen braks like forThanksgiving and Christmas, because I'm like I wasso hungry. I want to go home like mom, Lis Tok. For me, everything you know and also of course, it's pend time withmy family, but usually those to holidaysis. When I went during sprinnbreaking during the summer- and I was usually away so that's like hat I've-always just been like that, even in middle school during the summer, Iwould go to an arts camp and I would be gone training. overyone else is, you know going toparties and concerts and six lags during the summer. I was like workingall the time like you know busy. U Yeah so now in college you're, so you'regetting towards the end. You probably have a pretty good idea, you're goingto be a professionally in the arts. What happened or what was the first break?You got or did you know like, for you know, political science, major businessstudent. They start Anvia with companies and that kind of stuff wlike.What went on in your world with that? Well whill. I was in college, I wasactually. I was actually fortunate enough to work. While I was in school, there were a couple of companies, BAScompanies that were interested in me and they hired me for a few shows and I got to guest with which was nice. So I didn' have a tough transitionafter college was over, but I think the thing that Startin, like my I guess, journey aSartum was, I think it was my enjunior year I was invited to perform on theshows to you think you can dance as a guest and I was like Oh that's kind of cooland I have never done anything to that magnitude. I think that was my firsttime. Conforming on TV, I was really amused. IME, like ths as, like maybe they'relike I don't know putting together a big group number or something- and Iwas like I don't know why they would be calling me and I thon fe get Matua Litgo. One ofthe producers was like yeah. I guess performers, Bu and Wekin lacy is am pitbull and Undera Valliy theater and I was like that's that's a pretty good group to bein Yeahlik W. I was like, I thought they had the wrong number. I was likeyeah, so what did you when you went there anddid that? What did you have? What were you? Were you dancing hip hup? Whatwere you did like? What was your altyle? I was dancing contemporary. I did aCOMTEMPORAR Ello, where it was handcupped the whole time. Yeah that'dbe tough yeah. I decided to be a good idea to challenge myself and I'm always trying to do somethingdifferent than something you be an you know. IAVE always been made fun ofand praised for my Lix or like people used to call me like Perjule, like yourlegs, are so crazy, you're. So strong like I was like. Why not do something with that like? Why notshowcase O, I'm usually strong? My legs are so like whatif. I could do anentire dance without using my arms. I've never seen that that before and itwould probably ly be really difficult, but if I pout it off, it would bepretty awesome which I did they loved it and I'llnever do it again. BCAUE Itas, very difficult couldt. Imagine that, like how do you, MEA with that type of dad? How do youwithout using your arms as balance? How does that that's kind of crazy yeah? It'sinteresting. It's just I mean I uctually just go in the SCLEL and inthe dance studio, and I just am proud of just playing like. Let's see what Ican do, what we can do with this. I I literally remember I was in collegewhen I came up with the idea d I went to the there was a adult exotic, stor, Gike, okay, I'm Gon- to go on here andget them. So I winn like what do you need in Lik ane pancuffs, thor likeokay, so we have these with the fur we have these here. I SAI! No! No! It'snot like that. We're not doing that! It's not! That type of thing you like Yeahi, think Dave has the ones with theSCIR minorolvitoosofter yeah iwonreall Wani pop on from therejust Wen in the studio, an playe around...

I. How can I get in and out of IIS TALNI use my Bodywat is and that's how I came about yeah, so that sounds like it went very welllike what happened next, like you definitely guardered some attentionwith that yeah. After that, I definitely my following ineplice and I got a lotof inquiries and shortly after I' moved to Italy, Ianced with the company there I win in Bennis and then I started training alittle bit there as well. Then I moved back to Fel Abelt, the antacs it he I guessID with the company there. Then I moved to Los Angeles and started dancing commercially there,which is rather than that. What is art like Sewe over you've been overseas.You've been all around the world dancing. How are other countries? I don't know, I'm trying to figure outlike in their kind of viewership or audience of thearts and what you do compared to the United States, because it's you knowthose places seem to have like you go to France and Italy and all thoseplaces like more appreciative, ges. What you do versus here or similar like, I think, the mentality and appreciationof much different. I do Cillappreciate Aain the states that I'm do particularly inEurope. I noise Ta. I get a bigger responsethere and they're more they're, more inclines to art there.They love dance. They treat them like loyalty like in certain places theythose r their theater ovors. They go to the UPWOR. They go see that way theydon't they enjoy these things which in our country, I feel as though, as faras the arts are concerned, people leave more so towards singing. I don't know why I think, like I saidpeople have the misconception for some reason: dvance isn't that interestingto people or it's not that Harr. They don't think it's that hard, but it's Successiv. It's a Whil Liisaid we have like six. Seven vocal compesition shows on TV like right now,but there's like one to damn shows or even like Atim America got Tilon ErHiti talent, competition, usually as singer ons. Well, if it is dance, it's usually likehip hopper, something like Gord. I think there was on America's God talent,because my friend Terry Cruiz is you know on that show and he's introducingall the talent they had a big group. I don't know if they were from Russia orUkraine or somewhere India, something an yeah yeah so theywere from India,and they were great, but you know still they don't win like you know. They wantto see the guy who comes off the street has a big beer plays guitar and Tinks,so some song, but no, I understand so what the Cason is much better yeah inmy opiniona well, DJ was on that show too you you're on it right. Yeah wasAli. Think he's been on every show if theies dance, e's busithey want Dj tobe a part of it. Well, I would to ask him just real quick. I saw in your bio that you were on, soyou think you can dance Ukrane addition is that yeah? What was that? How isthat different? Like? Are there different judges or different judgmes? I did the same thing for the most partthey aske me to perform as a guest in I performed Asolo, but the judges are different andeverything is different. Ow, the the Oulems are different. They ouldthey work them really hard and they don't get paid as much I mean, usuallywhen you're on shows like that, you don't get paid any way. A lot of peopledon't know that which was an interesting. Maybe you CEN,like a Lile sypen mayby to buy personal things like toettrees or whatever youmay need, but some upside to in the downside, yourexpos and you get all these opportunities, sometimes aftor, butwhile Yeu're on the show at's just a long list of restrictions in long hours,yeah, but I' locy, like I said they work way more and they work way morehours than concesses. That I know on the US show like brazy hours like six of the morning till like two in themorning will like yeah. He be news. TAT like to am it's pretty insane. I have a feeling that pit bull an andriquet and Glacius weren't in the Ukraine, or were they say to go over there with you, so you know dance there'sa lot of showsaround it, though I think there's a lot...

...of there's been a lot of movies andshows so right now. What shows do you like that are on you know, eitherNetflix or regular TV or cable shows that you like that that have danceing,because there are some that my wife and I will watch and really enjoy. There's no shows. There's no shows withdance that I like at this moment. I always appreciate the shows for whatthey for briaging dance to the forefrond and te're making people moreaware of it. But a lot of times it's satuated and it's very. I want to be careful, F, MI, bors, itsvery saturated, and it's not realistic to the art form like they urge them to do a lot of tricksand a lot of blasshy stuff because or ovance to like these popularbillboard, music songs, because they think that yeuers are not smart and ifthey don't have a recerence point to connect Ed tothey're, not going to be interested in it. Because it's not interesting, but Idon't know I jisagree. I think it would, if you 're great at what you do itwon't matter. It's the same thing sipies like Runa Mars as a very old sid,and it's not the trendy popularerything, but it works for him and he doesn'twell. You know Samething Aby, winehouse or whoever they don't really change ecordingmachin. So there's no shows that I watch because I'm like ohlike this isthis looks the same is this: This is really an Apro, an gymnastics ore justflipping every five seconds like there's no artist tree, there's notechnique. There's no, there's no emotion, it's all to get inapplause right right. So what would be your favorite movie that you've watchedthe that envolve tands yeah? Like you, said?Okay, this is true. We really watching some people perform at their highestlevel, we're shooting from Pittsburgh, andthat was the home of Flash Dance Ohte a good one, yeah last ANCEC. Well, youprobably liked it for a different reason than DJ liked it there's a lotof sweating and stuff yeah, CASS, DANCIS, absoluty, great udirty,dancing, that's another classic! Obviously, sinter stage I think, is wonderul aswell. Yeah, there's, there's some reallygreat ones: Breakin Yeah! I can go on it on, but usually Ithink theyre like the older movies, more classics yeah. So I am assuming that you can do all typesof dances, ball, room everything, everything when I everything, but a lot,probably like I was trained in ten to twelve different styles. That's pretty amazing, so, like eventhe old school movies like you're talking about like Jen Kelle, likesinging in the ray and all those old movies that they I mean it was big backin the day. A lot of the movies were about dancing and Jo that and they'renot like that anymore yeah. It goes through away. I feel like it'sgoing to come back though. So what is it like? So now you saidyou're in commercial dancing. What does that mean? So icommercial dancing it's basically sothe differencis that usually there's not there's not a lot of there's, not a lot of repersal time,because in the commercial oand everything is about money and everything is rushed and it's very flashy like we spend a lot oftime in the concert world developing things taking our time porographic. Sometimesit takes months to porygraph one Mala versus commercially a lot of the jobs.I've done. You'll do a music, video and there's like two reersals, and then youshout to busthe video, so there's no time to really like explore and likecreate stuff or just like learn to stup, sepside, side, side, Clat, shinny anddown and smile, and then that's it. So it's like you know that very very different, tsohcommercial dancing. I think, like it, caters to the audience and concert dancing. It incorporates the audience, but itcaters to the arts to what your feeling, which is loring, what you're trying toTonbay that's more important than trying to desperately do anything toget an applause or to get ratings. Fords, the God people interested in it.It's more honest than my opinion. So what's your what's your typicalschedule, like you're teaching all over the world, they're teachingmultiple companies right, I mean you're. You sound like you're, pretty busy likewhat's what's a typical week for DJ.

Well, it changes, but it's pretty busy,I'm a average. I fly usually three to five times a week. This year has been one of the busiestcurrently on spor with share and then during our grates teaching and guests performing atDallas. The different events in between are on our days Offon for on teachingin the cities that were in or corengrapping and also producing andwriting doing other projects as well. So I'm pretty busy sounds like it. Well, what's what'sLafe from the road with sherelike? It's awesome, I mean it hasn't. PROSANTOMS! You know, I think the best things when you get in anartist like her whos vary gons, O earth and very cool and related Orcus theyre,not always like that. They can be Mary, dbash or Bery, not kind right, but she all of thatshe's very find very weet woman. You get to travel and go toa bunch of different places. You get to perform in front of fifteen totty, evenmore thousands of people. We did the net galof this year, which was reallyawesome. I renemver thought that I would bethere. I was like sheas a surprise guest. I was like Oh my gosh like thisis so cool like you know, that's awesome. Yeah she has to be veryinspirational because she's been doing what she's doing for a long long timeshe has. Is It's strange. She said a few weeks ago. She told us she's gotit's so weird. She said when I first started in this industry was one of theyoungest people and now m one of the oldest people doing it yeah like thereas, nobody, my age whenI started and there's not really a lot people. My paion, like not maybe wentto rolling stones that maprobably be kind of similar. You know how manydecades has it been for her. It's been for it's been at least five five I meanSundy and chairstores earlys, maybe so yeah she iteen I as sixteen seventythree now wow and how many years have you been with her I've been wikhg herthree years now. Well, an that's Aiki said. I never plan to be just kind offell into my lap. I didn't even really I mane mygeneration. I would shares problem the movie Bue Ast and right believe. Do youlsunny and share like that? I was never on my bucket list, but and this onesebalmission I was like I I'm preeg This Day. I don't really feellike going. I don't need to go because I am working a much of other things,but let's just go like and see what happens and they need it, a someone whowas a dancer and who could do garian stuff like chapes and silks, and there were about four hundred guysthere they were looking for to and out of four hundred guys. I was the onlyone that could do everything that they were asking for yeah, so you were inautomatically yeah what what other artists have you beenwith like, whereas far as you know, performed on stage with them and haveyou ever done? Something like A. I know at the Super Bowl. There's other bigspectacles big shows. Have you done anything like that? I would love to think thith super bowl.I have not yet. I have worked with SOMOF OF ARTISTPOART with twenty one. Pilots hat worked with CVM, on wit the Jacksons. I've workedwith Jessej yeah, let's goes on, and on yeah,so you I mean somebody at the talent level that you have I'm sure they'rethey're, always looking for somebody like you to come on and you're like.Well, I'm doing like thirty things right now, so maybe maybe when I slowdown I'll come back, it's a it's strange. I mean I'm in adifferent place. Now I think before I always. I would just take babies casislike I'm lucky, because I think in my mind I was like I'm sure, and I don'thave the right body type and I all these reasons why I should be doing it,so I'm probably loving to get this section. Do it, but now, like I said I, I am Feelitg ypressure and I've kind of created a lane for myself.I've had a very unique tourney where I've been able to guest with companiesor perform with artists or ticken shoes. What I would like to do and what Idon't want to do,...

I wouldnt be open to try differentthings. Yeah Right. I wanted to ask you. So we have a good family friend who shewas. I don't know if Youve ever seen this show it's called dance, MOMS inPittsburgh, so so Niasu, I don't know if you know Niasu so she's, a goodfamily friend of ours, her brother and my son ere best friends. They went tohigh school together, but she has made an incredible career out of starting adance, although it was on TV and I'm sure very commercialized, and all that,but but she's taken at to another level, where she's making her own music videosshe'sshe's on Disney channel she's on soap operas like it is led to a greatcareer for her yeah and it'. So what do you say to like kids,like that that have I mean her? Parents have been very supported like yearswhere, but not everybody's parents are supportive. That's true. What do yousay to those kids at really think they want to do that and have thataspiration, and how would you motivate them? I would say if it's, if you findsomething that you're passionate about to continue doing it- and you know just to continue doing what you love, because you loveit- that Shal always see enough and it you're lovely to have someone tosupport you. That should just be a bonus. I think it should be theDECIDEDG factor and it's easier set than like. I said I was always the only guyin my class in a balling Bass, so that was not very fun and I got teese a lotof stuff, but I would read- and I would read different stories or watchdifferent things to motivate myself or I had a lot of great friends and stuff.That would motivate me no matter how weird I was so you just have to tonstantly,surround yourself with people that support you, and even if they don'tunderstand you, they allow you to be who you are and like. I said. I think that that'sthe key, and sometimes you know it's not going to be the people who youthink it will be. But at the end of the day you have to finda way: Toe, Moll natureself. If you, if you love to do something, then I think that that's reason enough tokeep doing it and don't be discouraged in ways like being told you don't havea dacers body and you know, like you, youhave an unconventional danges bodyand you said, you're a little shorter than man in more muscular and so you'reat the top of the game. Without an ancwers body that senior pictures ofGoogle and we couldn't have less an common body,BIS UI'm the same way, but but it's that it's that there's a stereotyperight just like in football like you, have to be a six foot, four quarterbackand there's all these people breaking those stereotypes. Now that are comingout and say: No, you don't it's about how good you are it's about the passionyou bring yeah and I think you you've really shown that in your industry,yeah S, it's a challenge of very hard but, like I said, if you're, if your ability and your love is on awhole nother sectum, then it just can't be denied. I wuld say that if you haveall of those things against you, but the love and the talent is sounbeniable there's no way anyone can get around it, which is what I thinkhas happened in my pace. You know in my miny of my experiences they're, likehe's short, or he doesn't have the right. Bodys hipe he's not what we'relooking for, but I'm sorry we need him like we need oneof those like. I can use one ofthose, you know, so you have to be that muchbetter, which is a lot of work, its really hard, but it's possible. It'snot impossible. You know what is ash so ash. It sense for artist compllete,human, its a dance convention where we offer classes and HNAS and different workshops. We travel thecountry, the he director and Alders Grandokan train and he started itbecause he wanted to connect dancers and teachers and dosomething for the community to encourage them and basically a tour of notable faculty. Some of them havedanced and pornograph for Janit Jackson for Alea or Justin Beeber for Denni Labatto,literally everything than you have probla Tony Nominatin, coreographers tapers everything all of us gettogether and we travel every weekend to a new city and we teach over fivehundred dancers and we answer questions...

...and try to motivate them and get themidvice on the future and where you going next where's ash going to be nextwe're all. Currently we start back in the fall and we dotwenty cities a year and one national in Orlando Florida. So we startregionally in the fall in October and Orlando Florida and we go all the waytill April Dave. How many miles do you think Dj puts on is his card and it'slike if lot of well, if he like three times a week, average yeah ecausethat'sthat's, just incredible. How do you like? What is your key to flyinglike because for me I hate flying because I don't fit in any se, becauseiisix four welhe's so flexible, though doesn't even yeah. He can like put hisTang up and like Awas, but my team, actually I'm clos tecobing and I'm atocoking as well,which, as very strange like ih like, but I have a process. I usually don'tgo to sleep the night before, because when your body is like irresistibly,Tirin Dit, just shuts down no matter which you no matter what you're goingthing. So I usually am so tired, but I just pass on like and then the other thing is like. I tryto distract myself. I try to read, or I do work and as far as me, because it's taxingand I do get really resurge on like man, I cannot gothrough TSA again. I cannot do this like it's exhausting and then you waitfor your bags and then the backs Don' show up, and then just all of that Itry to remember why I'm going to where I'm going and how lucky I am Mi you're,going to inspire a bunch of kids for you're going to this place, whereyou've never been before, how many people get to do that. How many peopleare working jobs right now that they don't like, but they're, just doing itas they need to provide for their kids or they need e means to get prove butyou're doing something that supplies all of that, and it's something youlove and that's something that you should never forget. So I try toremember that too, with traveling with the entrage withshare. What's what's that experience like you guys, Les'Ts Go Pretty First Glass and beautiful tourbuses and I guessshe's she off them. She takes really great care of us. You know I iplay business class and we have thesebeautiful luxury torbuses and be titand like TLE lounge area. It take it USwhatever, who we want for the bus rise, Aus, they're kind of log whichobviously a put down hot. She goes and Guby mayrs and everything, probably not gonto eat hey're gon et everything we want. So Idu EA bunch of stuff down yeah, it's wonderful, she's great. Theyhave they. She does this thing we have BagelKnights, occasionally, which is always funshe from the proves of the dancer,the singers, everyone, that's a part of production. She Rugs Ha huge ballroomin a hotel and it was free drinks and food andeverything for everyone and we played Bingo for cash prisis and she justgives out money and she plays with us and stuff an it's like it's a lot offun. We get really stressed: What's the biggest crowd you've everperformed in front of when touring wit share the biggest crowd, I want to say somewhere so far somewhere between, I won to think twent. Twenty twothousand people. Well, that's rea big yeah, somewhere around there yeah. What so, we've been through your life.You know, and one of the things that we do now is we like to go through what wecall the nohuddle. You know our shows called Hutdl up with gus and we do thenohuddle. We try to go at the end and we' like to fire a bunch of questionsat you and have you answer them real, quick and just have some fun with it. So we're going to get your quick witsout right now: okay, there's not a pimaris ther. Am I goingto be stressed? No you're not going to be straight, be just you you'll, begreat. I have anxiety from America Gotsalo, no there's, no, there's! No, there's noegx red extra golden buzz or anything like that. We're good IENEVER, gottenanokay! If you depict one person who's the greatest dancer ever. Oh I'm gonna go with desna Richardson Nice. It's really hard, I'm just goingto just get them ou up the top of my head. Do you have a pet peeve? I donumerous cetpes one of the is I I don't...

...like when People Interrupti me when I'mtalking. I think it's very rude. I like that. If someone, if there was amovie about Dj smart who would play Dj Smart in the movie, I would say either Dan Hinson or it's your tal about. I like that, so good to be okay, if youcould go back in time and tell a young Dj smart one thing, what would it be? I would tell dj there's no one like you and you'reunusual, but that's okay, that's going to be your biggest asset,one Tey, all right! So, if DJ SMART, when he wastwelve decided not to be a dancer to be a track star,what would have been your favorite race or whatever it would have been inyou wouldyouav that done antri event in Drek e hurls are tough. I coached a kid inhigh school, his name is Zekelli and he plays for H, Dallas cowboys now, and hewas the state champion four years a row in the hurdles in Missouri. I didn't think that would transfer tothe football field, but it actually because of the flexibility andeverything like his speed and his strength was incredible. Yeah, it'shard. You could probaby Hidh Jumk to. I cansee I oh yeah, I could see him. I jumping. I think you would havedefinitely e done that. What do you think the biggestmisconception about dance is atd? It's easy s very difficult. If you had to go out and perform onedance right now, what is your favorite yeah know you're you're you're vestedin a ton of different styles. What is your favorite right now? I think you probably have to be betweencontemporary and Latin Balrom, probably maybe like seltor or TATA. If you could be anyone for one day whowould it be? Oh mamawhat, do you think he's doingright now? I don't know I'm like. Maybe I don'tmaybe like smoking a cigar drinking coffi somewhere. He Don at anybody, see him he's just inTe Bathroom, yeah, yeah reading the news is Sain his head,like what's going on today, so you've been all over the world. What is your favorite place that you'veever been to t that's hard you're going to fly there right now,one of my top favorite places that I've been already yeah, I walt t sayprobably to buy really what why do you like to buy? I always wanted to visit the verse Pelifa and I love tobuy also nd. I think it's just beautiful, but I wanted to visit thetallest building in the world not actually invited to perform for anaward show which was at the verse Talipa. So I was like yes, two words,an MON son. Did you go to the top floor? It was like it was a little bit afbove midwaythroug, so Itas Pett, I didn't go to the top Dloor, but it was pretty highup yeah I so in New York at the EmpireState Building, I took the kids on top yeah. They were little and I've never beenreally afraid of height. I was so nervous and anxious. I couldn't even goto the edge and look over because I' so scared for, like the kids and theelevator ride down was terrible. I was so nervous. Does any that bother you itdoes it does. I don't like to stand into next to the edge of anything all right, Dave last one. What do youget really easy? What's your favoritealtene movie, My favorite ofline Movie, Oh at this time I mean I have Suer Wel IV, one I thinkliar Liaris hilarious, it's a great movie! Are you big, Jim Carry Fan? I I like alot of, I think, he's really smart, but I think he's hilarious he's a lariousactor. Okay, this woill be the last one and you can't say: share WHO's the mostfamous person on your phone right now. Well thing is pessive on my pall. Oh that's hoard, the most famous person on my phone.

I can't even think right now, O my gosh,like you, can say, share yeah. I think welltake share DJ. It was great. You taught us a lottoday. Thank you for sharing your story with us in the huddle, and I think itwas just you just have an amazing personality, amazing story, and I thinkyour fans are going to love to hear and learn a little bit about dance and howimportant it is in our world today, youguys tobeen a great time, fank e othanks to Joil that you know when it comes out. Okay, Il Kay, Soun good allright! Thank you e good one. Wi.

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