Windy City Media Group Frontpage News
Celebrating 30 Years of Gay Lesbian Bisexual and Trans News
home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2018-09-19
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor

  WINDY CITY TIMES

TV Choreographer-dancer Travis Wall on 'Dance' series, being out
by Andrew Davis, Windy City Times
2018-08-28

facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email


It's hard to believe that the Fox show So You Think You Can Dance is about to end its 15th season.

Travis Wall has been there almost from the beginning. Wall—who was born and raised in Virginia Beach, Virginia—competed on the show's second season in 2006, finishing second. ( Wall's brother, Danny Tidwell, was runner-up the following season. ) Since then, Wall has returned to the series to dance—but is probably best known as an Emmy-winning choreographer for the show who also has a dance company he started with a few others called Shaping Sound.

Wall recently talked with Windy City Times—the day after dancers Chelsea Hough and Evan DeBenedetto ( who, among other things, danced to a Wall piece that the judges praised ) were eliminated from So You Think You Can Dance.

Windy City Times: I was wondering about your thoughts after Evan and Chelsea were eliminated.

Travis Wall: Yeah … well, obviously, they did a really good job, but in the competition the judges take everything into consideration. I knew they were at the bottom, and I had a feeling they were going home.

WCT: The judges thought they did an outstanding job with your piece.

TW: Yeah. It was good to let them have a moment, and they connected. It was cool that the judges celebrated them.

WCT: By the way, how is Shaping Sound doing?

TW: It's great! We're on a bit of a hiatus right now. We toured so much last year that it took a toll on us, you know what I mean? We are going back on tour in the wintertime, and we're going to twist it up and make our own Nutcracker, so that's very exciting—and we will be stopping by Chicago.

WCT: How does it feel to be an Emmy winner?

TW: It's pretty exciting. Sometimes you get so wrapped up in life and stress that I have to remind myself that I'm so fortunate to do what I'm able to do and have the voice that I have, so I have to use that platform as much as possible.

WCT: You've been on the show practically from the beginning. What do you think has been the biggest change on the series—the addition of dance genres, or something else?

TW: I think the biggest change is the expectation of the dancers. When we first came on the show, everybody had their respective styles. Now, everyone trains in all these styles. Sometimes you find people who are extraordinary in one thing, but now there are people who are great at everything. Expectations are extremely high.

WCT: Is there any sort of friendly competition between the show's choreographers?

TW: Oh, God, no—we're a family. The things we have to go through on that show literally have us pooping in our pants on the live show. We find out who we have at the last minute. Performances can be incredible during the dress rehearsal, and then crash and burn during the live show. We have no idea; it's literally out of our hands. [Judge Nigel Lythgoe] could say, "That's the worst choreography I've seen in my life," and I'll never work again.

It's just all of it—if the costumes are going to fall off, if they're going to hit something. I'm always watching with an editing eye. I'm a perfectionist and that's my kryptonite sometimes. Last year, there was a piece I was nominated for an Emmy for—and it was the first time I didn't have any notes. I sat back and I got to watch, and I got to feel what everyone else feels.

WCT: How do you feel the show has dealt with performers who are LGBT? I know that when you competed, you felt you couldn't be yourself—and I know that was true not only of So You Think You Can Dance, but of other reality-competition shows as well.

TW: This is a sensitive subject because I work for the show, but do I wish we would expose and talk about it way more? Absolutely! It's such a huge part of the dance community. This season was the first time we talked about someone coming out of the closet. [Former RuPaul's Drag Race contestant Laganja Estranja, also known as Jay Jackson, auditioned on So You Think You Dance and made it to the academy.] It's better late than never, but we have to keep coming. I want to do a piece about what's going on in my personal life right now; it's a [same-sex] duet about a couple breaking up.

I think we should touch on LGBTQ issues more. People should be allowed to be themselves. There's some growth for this show. When I competed on the show I was told, "Girls are voting for you," so I felt like I had to put on this persona for the show. But these days, the more you are yourself, the more people like you. [Editor's note: Wall did a piece on the Aug. 27 episode of the show with dancer Darius Hickman about gender expression, which the judges called "a masterpiece.']

WCT: My last question is a general one, but I've got a range of answers in response: What does dance mean to you?

TW: Oh, God. [Laughs] I was born into this; my mom was my dance teacher. I learned to dance before I learned how to walk. [Laughs] My mom danced with me in her stomach until five days before she gave birth.

Music and dance have always been a part of my life. Dance is everything I know; it's been there for my career, friendship—it's how I've met every important person in my life. It's my expression; when I didn't know how to come out of the closet and I felt inner turmoil, I started creating.

Nowadays, dance is therapeutic. It allows me to take something terrible that's happened in my life and create something beautiful out of it.

The finale for So You Think You Can Dance will air Monday, Sept. 10; visit www.fox.com/so-you-think-you-can-dance/.


facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email





Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

Gay News

See Chicago Dance gala Sept. 25 2018-09-19 - See Chicago Dance ( SCD )—the dance industry's nonprofit marketing and advocacy organization—will host its fourth annual gala Tuesday, Sept. 25, 6 -10 ...


Gay News

'Maisel,' 'Thrones,' RuPaul rule Emmys 2018-09-18 - The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, Game of Thrones and RuPaul's Drag Race were the big winners in the areas of comedy, drama and reality ...


Gay News

GLAAD celebrates LGBTQ-inclusive 70th Annual Emmy Awards 2018-09-17 - September 18, 2018, New York, NY — GLAAD today celebrated the LGBTQ-inclusive winners of the 70th Annual Emmy Awards, while encouraging greater diversity ...


Gay News

Power ball, gala honors influential duo 2018-09-12 - See Chicago Dance ( SCD ) will celebrate a banner year at its 2018 annual gala. Among other unprecedented changes under the spotlight ...


Gay News

SHOWBIZ Sia, Rain Dove, Justin Bieber, Grace Jones, Kathy Griffin 2018-09-04 - Australian singer Sia told Rolling Stone about that one time she refused to get her picture taken with Donald Trump, citing her queer ...


Gay News

Jamaican trans event Sept. 7 2018-08-29 - The Jamaican Fruit & Flowers Arts Experience will take place Friday, Sept. 7, 7-10 p.m., at 5400 S. Pulaski Rd. The event will ...


Gay News

World Premiere of Hedwig Dances Futura November 1,2, and 3, 2018 2018-08-21 - Hedwig Dances choreographer and artistic director Jan Bartoszek has taken the company's 33 years' plus reputation as an interdisciplinary creative force to new ...


Gay News

Auditorium hosts 27th annual Dance for Life 2018-08-19 - For its 27th annual event, Dance for Life Chicago presented a diverse group of companies and artists performing Aug. 18, at the Auditorium ...


Gay News

Dance for Life continues to celebrate life, honoring those who have passed 2018-08-15 - In the darkest days of the 1980s, Chicago's dance community was gamely pirouetting through a Giselle-mist insufficiently shrouding the HIV/AIDS tragedy, dancers involuntarily ...


Gay News

'Wendy Williams Show' in town Aug. 23 2018-08-14 - The tour promoting the 10th season of The Wendy Williams Show will stop at the House of Blues, 329 N. Dearborn St., on ...


 



Copyright © 2018 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 

 

 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS

Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor
Sponsor


 



Sponsor

About WCMG Publications News Index  Entertainment Features Bars & Clubs Calendar Videos Advertisers OUT! Guide    Marriage


About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Post an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group produces Windy City Queercast, & publishes Windy City Times,
The Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community,
Nightspots, Out! Resource Guide, and Identity.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.