Welcome to episode 139 of the DanceSpeak podcast with Maleek Washington (Camille A.Brown & Dancers, Sleep No More, Abraham.In.Motion, Sia, Rihanna, and more). I met Maleek at LaGuardia H.S. of the Performance Arts when we were students there 200 years ago (that wasn't a typo). He ALWAYS booked work, and continued to always work and still continues... So naturally, I wanted to learn about how Maleek approaches career. Not only has he performed in many notable companies, but he has also been teaching for years at famous institutions such as Jacob's Pillow and Broadway Dance Center.
As Maleek shares his philosophies and tips on navigating work, he provides poignant clarity on how he knows when something is within his purpose or not. Within this, we learn about Maleek's near-death experience that nearly paralyzed him, how he has navigated difficult decisions, how higher education for dance has changed in the last decade, and much more!
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Sitting with Anissa Williams (Straight Outta Compton, Missy Elliot, 2Pac, Nike etc.) brings the HUMAN side from casting to our ears. Anissa shares about her journey from graduating school to getting into casting and how she earned he seat at the elite level that we so venerate. Anissa and I talk about everything from working on In Living Color, to the importance of work-life balance.
The thing I'm most hyped about here: I have forever been curious about the perspective of the casting director. Casting can seem like an elusive, mysterious, all-powerful entity that determines our fates. We thank casting when we are booked, we (don't hate me) blame casting when we don't get it (or maybe that's just me) but it is an INTEGRAL part of the performer's journey.
This episode will teach you, potentially challenge your perspective, and also warm your hearts as you hear about Anissa's deep-rooted connection to social justice and what inclusion can look like in this time.
After 15 years of experience in the dance world, Galit has worked as Assistant Choreographer for Prince, danced in numerous music videos, including Pharrell Williams' "Happy", has been featured in two dance publications, and currently works as a dance instructor and conditioning specialist in Los Angeles and around the country.