This week it has been all The Next Step talk in my house thanks to the amazing people at Family Channel.
My ten year old daughter is a HUGE fan so when I was asked if I’d like to interview some of the cast from The Next Step AND visit them on their Hit The Floor tour across Canada I couldn’t say no.
If you haven’t heard of The Next Step (if you have girls especially and own a television I’ll find this VERY hard to believe) it’s a reality-like show about an A-Troupe dance team’s journey to winning regionals. The show consist of age-appropriate drama, some great lessons in team work and dedication and some unbelievable dancing.
Best of all it’s Canadian, filled with Canadian talent who grew up dancing in Canadian dance competitions. Since I have a ten year old daughter who has been dancing in competitions for the last three years (and has her first ballet solo this season!) and a four year old daughter who wants to do everything her big sister does, I knew this show was going to be a hit in my house. Turns out it’s a HUGE hit all over the country.
Like every good mother I pulled my daughter out of school early to help share the question asking while we interviewed two of her favourite characters Trevor Tordjman who plays James and Brittany Raymond who plays Riley.
One of the questions my daughter really wanted to ask was about nerves – her competitive season is starting in the not-to-distant future and with her first solo she’s been wondering a bit about how nervous she might get before going on stage.
When both Trevor and Brittany admitted they still get nervous before going on stage or filming she was very curious to hear about their strategies to help them just focus on the dance.
“I used to let the pressure get to me when I was younger because I have been performing for so long it doesn’t really bother me as much. I do still get nerves but just being with my friends and letting them help calm me down really helps” – Brittany
“When I do get nerves I just think to myself why am I getting nervous? It’s all in your head really. The most important part is to just have fun – especially when you’re dancing. Right when you go on stage you’re already having so much fun, if you love to dance the nerves go out the window pretty quick.” – Trevor
We talked about each one of their favourite The Next Step episodes to film (FYI the Beach episode and the very first audition episode were the winners hands down) and a bit about their characters. It made this dance mom very happy when Trevor said that even though his character James is struggling a bit with math at school in the show right now that he urges “any dancer that is in the studio 24-7 and so committed to dance to not let that overcome their whole head and definitely make time for school work because that is very important as well.”
One of the things that was important for me to ask – so that my daughter could hear – was how they take care of themselves on a daily basis to ensure they stay strong and injury free. As many dance moms will attest, when we watch our children move from recreational dancer to competitive dancer, we also see the strain on their body, the hurt after hours of dance and the need to start feeding them like athletes.
Trevor summed it up perfectly with “definitely stretching and remaining active and fit in general.”
When we were nearing the end of our interview, I could tell these young talented dancers had so much inspiration to give to those that are following in their footsteps and asked if they had any advice for dancers like my daughter who were hitting the stage solo for the first time this year.
“Just enjoy every minute of it because it’s so much fun…You’ll kill it for sure.” – Trevor
“Don’t be too nervous. I remember my first time doing a solo at competition was the most scary feeling I’ve ever had but the second you get on stage and hear that music it’s like your body just takes over and you just go for it. You get lost in it and it’s such a cool feeling… and SMILE!” – Brittany
Needless to say, my daughter was smiling ear to ear when I took her back to school after our interview.
A few days later when we hit the road for the Hit The Floor tour she couldn’t contain her excitement to see the cast perform live AND get to meet them face to face during the autograph session.
I cannot thank the Family Channel team enough for the opportunity for my daughter (and me!) to interview two amazingly talented dancers and simply inspirational individuals. THANK YOU!
For more information on the Hit The Floor tour including dates and locations across the country and how to get a wrist band click here (hurry because the tour ends on October 27th!).
For more information on The Next Step on Disney’s Family Channel click here.