Celebrity Choreographer William “Willdabeast” Adams shares moves with students

Why We Dancers pose with William "Willdabeast" Adams and Tatianna J Dorsey.

Why We Dance students pose with William “Willdabeast” Adams and Tatianna J Dorsey at the Why We Dance 2013 festival, March 23, 2013.

The fifth annual Why We Dance event featured celebrity choreography William “Willdabeast” Adams who has traveled the world teaching and working with hip hop artists Usher, Busta Rhyms, T-Pain and Chris Brown. worked extensively choreographing hip hop videos, tours and dance television shows. Some of his television credits include appearing on America’s Best Dance Crew.

Why We Dance in conjunction with Maxson Middle School hosted a free hip hop workshop Saturday, March 23. The program began at 9:30 am with a workshop led by Tatianna J Dorsey. Willdabeast taught the 10:30 am workshop to the delight of the students. Registration was onsite.

Participants who took place in these two master hiphop classes free of cost due in part to a Union County HEART (History, Education, Art-Reaching-Thousands) grant and with support from the community.

Tatianna J was thrilled to take part in Willdabeast’s workshop. She is a local choreographer who has worked at camps and churches.

Tatianna Dorsey teaching at the Why We Dance 2013 Festival.

Close up of Tatianna J Dorsey leading hip hop class at the Why We Dance 2013 festival.

Why We Dance Director Candace Waller and Yateesha Davis pose with William "Willdabeast" Adams.

Why We Dance Director Candace Waller and Legendary choreographer Yateesha Davis pose with William “Willdabeast” Adams at the Why We Dance 2013 Festival.


“I loved his teaching style. He was interactive, personal and the choreography was easy to catch on. He also stressed having fun,” said Dorsey, who is studying criminal justice and dance at Raritan Valley Community College in Branchburg. “Teaching with him was an honor and a blessing.” ..
Yateesha Davis Dance Director of the Legendary Dance team from Maxson Middle School and Candace Waller Dance Director of the Why We Dance team came together to put on this arts program for the community. The two dance teams will be dancing together on the track “Hello” from Mindless Behavior.

“It is so important that we have arts for the community,” Waller said. “Ms. Davis has a great group of students. She teaches them various forms of dance. Working with her and her dancers has been wonderful.”
Contact Candace Waller at 908.432.2003 or email whywedance@gmail.com for more information on this event.

Why We Dance Offers FREE Hip Hop Classes

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2012 Why We Dance crew posing for a group shot at the Why We Dance Festival.

Why We Dance will again be teaching classes in the genre of ‘Old Skool’ (misspelling intended) Hiphop. Classes are geared to people who want to learn the history and dancing of an art form that was deemed a fad but has lasted 25 plus years. The influence Hiphop has on society cannot be denied. This class was focus on the positive side of the dancing.

The 2013 season starts Tuesday, January 8, from 7-8 p,.m. at the LeGrande Park Building in Fanwood. Classes are FREE. Why We Dance is celebrating its fifth year. As the director and founder of the program I am so humbled at the support and encouragement I have received from students, parents, volunteers and caring businesses who have supplied school supplies and refreshments.

Why We Dance was blessed to receive for the fifth year in a row a Union County HEART Grant. This is how I am able to bring in seasoned dance professions in various areas of dance to teach classes and facilitate works at  annual dance festival that takes place each March that is also FREE.

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Dance instructors Nick Abreu and Joy Jackson demonstrating a battle dance.

As a person who has gone through several downsizing I understand the need to find constructive things for children to do without much expense. Why We Dance has been able to bring about positive change by giving students and outlet to express creativity for FREE.

The classes are open to all and everyone interested in learning about hip hop dancing. Registration is ongoing and can be done by sending an email to whywedance@gmail.com or calling 908.432.2003. 

Please check this site to check for updates on classes, events, guest teacher bios.

This Arts program is made possible by in part by a HEART (History Education, Art Reaching Thousands) Grant by the Union County Board of Chosen Freeholders.

June is Black Music Month: Michael Jackson

June has been designated Black Music Appreciation Month. I think with all the sampling out there we should take the time to honor our musical ancestors. The first artist I wanted to celebrate is Michael Jackson.

When he did the Motown special he was already a legend in the making. He started out with the Jackson 5 that became the Jacksons. Michael was a powerful musical entity that could write, sing, dance, produce and create. He showcased the moonwalk and the crowd went wild.

Michale Jackson's Thriller album cover

Michael Jackson’s Thriller was truly a phenomenon. It broke all kinds of music records and is still a classic more than 25 years later.

I loved Michael as a kid. He was the first African-American artist featured on MTV. The music channel started in the early eighties but many of my favorite artist were never featured there. Micaheal’s album Thriller broke so many barriers and crossing the color line at MTV was one of them. Michael treated his videos like mini films.

When he made the video for Thriller he hired a movie director to make a mini-horror flick for about 1 million dollars. It instantly became a hit. The Making of Thriller (the forefather of reality television in my humble opinion) gave us all the behind the scenes tidbits that went into making the video.

Everybody is making a behind the scenes videos but Michael was the first artist to share in this way. This speaks volumes to his generous heart. Michael may be gone physically but his spirit lives on in his music. He never forgot his musical roots.

Michael Jackson is my favorite dancer. He truly was an artist and his music uplifted people. I was never embarassed to play his songs. I hope Michael is getting the respect and credit he deserved now because he had a lot of pain in his life. I salute you musical legends.

In my upcoming posts I will be talking about James Brown, Bojangles, The Nicholas Brothers and Sammy Davis Junior.

Whitney Houston “I Wanna Dance With Somebody”

One of my favorite Whitney Houston video is “I Wanna Dance With Somebody”. RIP Ms. Houston 1963-2012

Red Tails featuring singer/dancer NE-YO

I am a huge Ne-yo fan. I love the way he dances the positive lyrics in his music so when I heard that he was in RED TAILS it made me want to see the movie even more. I was among those who  rushed to see the movie on opening weekend. ImageI LOVEDDDDDDD the movie. The story is about the Tustekee Airmen and the director is Star Wars creator and director George Lucas. I enjoyed Star Wars and all the effects so I knew this would be a great movie. NE-YO, a compelling story and a celebrated director, what could possible go wrong???? It turns out a lot.

When I got tot the theater (Sony Loews, Mountainside) I told the cashier I wanted to see RED TAILS paid my money and went into the the theatre. Only I wasn’t in the theater for RED TAILS but another movie, Sherlock Holmes. I missed 20 minutes of RED TAILS.  I enjoyed the parts of the movie I did see but I wasn’t satisfied.

I went to the manager and explained that I was given the wrong ticket. He was reluctant to do anything because I had seen some of the movie. I pressed the issue because I paid $10.50 to see the entire film not miss the first 20 minutes. This nosy bystander who had no affiliation with the movie butted in and I kindly asked him to butt out. I was give a “free” pass to another showing but I was not satistfaced.

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I requested that the ticket be adjusted to reflect RED TAILS and not another movie. The following week 3 PEOPLE SITTING NEXT TO ME ALSO GOT THE WRONG TICKET FOR RED TAILS.  I scalled the general manager the following Monday who explained that ticket wasn’t as relevant as I was making it out to be  because the films are paid for in advance. I kindly pointed out to her that ticket sales are used to determine ratings. I also wrote her a letter. I am writing this entry to let people know that they should always check their ticket stubs of movies. If they notice a mistakes take it up with the manager and have their tickets credit to correct movie. 

African-Amrericans in big budget Oscar worthy films are rare. Having an all-black cast is even rarer. And having a esteemed and highly respected director such as George Lucas sink millions of his own money into this type of film is rarest. 

Why We Dance 2011 on Saturday, March 12 at the Westtfield Y

Dance Workshops at the Westfield Y

Violetta and her won with Why We Dancer Priscilla Hatchett

Why We Dance in conjunction with the Westfield Neighborhood Council will be presenting free dance workshops at the Westfield Y on March 12, 2011. Participants can register on the day of the event beginning at 10:30 a.m.

The workshops are free and open to the public. There will be three hour long workshops starting from 11 a.m.- 2 p.m. Dancers will be able to showcase their talent from 2-3 p.m. during the share period. This is the 3rd annual Why We Dance event. The first two events drew participants from around the state and featured professional dancers to lead the workshops.

Scotch Plains resident Kathleen McMahon will be teaching the first workshop on African and bellydance from 11-12. McMahon is a certified hospice nurse and teacher specializes in belly dancing. In 2008 she took a humanitarian trip to Burandi, Africa where she danced with hospice patients. She will instruct on the dance techniques that learned while there.

Nick Abreu who lives in Cranford will be teaching a free style hip hop class from 12-1. Abreu started dancing in the late seventies and became active in the club scene in the early eighties and continued to dance until the nineties. He was a dancer with the Funhouse B-Boys, a hip hop dance crew. He danced at the Funhouse and other underground and popular clubs in New York and New Jersey. “We won many dance contests and did many dance battles,” Abreu said. “We wanted to learn the different styles of dance.”

Some of the clubs Nick and his crew danced at were the Roxy and Studio 54. He started a hip-hop/b-boy program which is still ongoing in Pittsburgh, PA. He worked as a choreographer and appeared in a few videos. He is now working on a documentary about the legendary Funhouse night club.

Violeta Galagarza riveted the audience at the first Why We Dance event. She will be teaching a technique and choreography class. She is from Brooklyn and she will be bring her son to class to serve as a role model for other young male hip hop dancers.
Her company is KR3TS Dance Company that caters to children, young adults of lower to middle income families in Latino communities of New York City primarily as well as other communities.

Their goal is to provide an outlet to develop skills and abilities that will enhance their lifestyles and express their talents through dance. KR3TS produces multiple shows and fund-raisers throughout the year and consistently provides professional opportunities for its students by providing dancers for music videos, concerts, photo shoots, events and festivals. Violet’s program has produced a number of professional dancers and choreographers who got their start and their training through KR3TS.

In the wake of all the budgets cuts affecting art, gym and dance classes in the schools this event will meet the need for people, particularly our youth to remain active and learn about the arts says Dance Coordinator Candace Waller.

“Why We Dance fulfills a need and exposes participants to international talent. We hope to encourage youth to stay active and just have fun. Obesity and budgets cuts have hindered some to dance. “

Dancers from the weekly classes that took place at the Westfield Neighborhood Council will be presenting two numbers during the share period from 2-3 p.m.

Please contact Why We Dance at whywedance@gmail.com or (908) 432-2003 for more information.

Funding for this program came from the Union County HEART grant.

WWD-2011-Poster

Bags of Gold

I was reading the Bible today during my devotional and I found the scripture in Mathew (Mathew 25:14-30) that talks about Bags of Gold. I define Bags of Gold as gift that God gives us to help others. Everyone has at least one but if we don’t use it for God’s will and glory it will be taken away from us.

The scripture says a rich man gave one servant 5 bags of Gold and another servant 2 bags of gold and the last servant one bag of gold. The first two servants doubled the rich man’s profits but the man with one man of gold hid it and basically didn’t use it. How often we as people do the same thing. God has given some the gift of prophesy, singing, dancing, music and cooking. It is up to us to discover how to use those gifts for God’s glory but too many of us don’t do this.

Bags o Gold

God gives everyone Bags of Gold. How will you use yours?

The Bible tells us that there will be an account of what we did with our Bags of Gold. I don’t want to have to tell God that I buried it. I am trying to use my Bags of Gold for His will and glory. Why We Dance came out of this and it is growing.

The organization is able to meet and exceed expectations despite the challenges. As I use my Bags of Gold I got more bags and I interact with more people.

My message to you today is use your Bags of Gold for God’s will and glory.

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