If you’ve seen Nikki Minaj, Lady Gaga, or Beyonce perform, or if you were ever a fan of MTV’s (super awesome) show “Making the Band,” then you’re familiar with the work of Laurieann Gibson. The uber-talented choreographer has been the go-to source for the music industry’s moves for more than a decade. Most recently, Gibson teamed up with TrillFit, a brand-new pop-up, hip-hop dance class that promises fun and fitness for pro dancers and newbies alike, which launched in Boston earlier this month.
Here, we chat with Gibson about her enviable career, her first client, the health benefits of dance, and more.
HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN DANCING?
I like to say I’ve been dancing since the day I was born! I have been taking formal dance classes since I was a small child.
WHAT ABOUT CHOREOGRAPHY? HOW DID YOU GET STARTED AS A CHOREOGRAPHER?
I started out as a dancer, as I started to understand my gift, I started to see visually how music sounded. I was able to create movement that told the story which emotionally impacted the atmosphere of the room. When I realized this I understood I was choreographing and felt legitimate in calling myself a choreographer.
BECAUSE WE HAVE TERRIBLE DANCE MOVES AND CAN’T EVEN IMAGINE PUTTING TOGETHER A WHOLE ROUTINE, WHAT’S THE PROCESS LIKE FOR ACTUALLY COMING UP WITH A NEW DANCE? HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE?
Each routine is different, some routines take longer than others, as well as the process varies from routine to routine.
WHO WAS YOUR FIRST MAJOR CELEBRITY CLIENT?
Mary J Blige.
WHO HAVE YOU WORKED WITH LATELY?
Well I just finished Nicki MInaj sold out world tour and her VMA 2015 performance. Currently, I’m prepping for Puff Daddy’s upcoming tour and festival performances.
DO YOU HAVE A FAVORITE DANCE YOU’VE EVER CHOREOGRAPHED?
I have many favorites! Probably too many to mention because each is special to me in that every time I choreograph a new piece I draw on the past and incorporate the present and future to try and bring something new and ground breaking each time.
IN YOUR OPINION, WHO’S THE BEST DANCER IN THE MUSIC INDUSTRY RIGHT NOW?
Again, its hard to pick out any one dancer because there are several I could name with unique skills and talent that make them the best at what they do. However, I don’t want to toot my own horn but what do they say, “if you don’t love yourself no one will” … so with that in mind I humbly say I am! 🙂
WHAT ARE THE HEALTH BENEFITS OF HIP HOP DANCING?
All types of movement and exercise that gets the heart pumping has health benefits. Hip hop dancing will definitely get you moving and your heart pumping which is healthy for your cardiovascular health. Many hip hop moves also require some muscle control with bending and contracting movement. This has health benefits in helping to tone your muscles. So you will not only will you lose weight but it helps you feel confident and powerful.
DO YOU HAVE TO HAVE A DANCE BACKGROUND TO ENJOY HIP-HOP DANCING AS EXERCISE?
No. Dancing is about movement. Everyone can move so just bring a good attitude and your guaranteed to learn how to make your body move and to have the most fun you’ve ever had!