Waverly Fredericks was on the verge of quitting dance when Chanel DaSilva invited the LaGuardia Performing Arts High School freshman to audition for the inaugural cohort of Young Professionals. Standing 6-foot-2, he'd been told that he looked too awkward and was "too big" to be a dancer. "I didn't like having long limbs that stretched from here to there," Fredericks says. "So I stood in the back, too scared to dance full-out."
Everything changed when DaSilva and MOVE|NYC| co-director Nigel Campbell sat down with Fredericks and asked what was going on. "They really understood how my mind was keeping me from dancing," Fredericks says. "They helped me be clearer with my words and my body." That clarity, plus four years as a Young Professional, gave Fredericks the confidence and technical polish to audition for The Juilliard School, where he has just finished his first year. Now, his goal is to tour the world with a company like Nederlands Dans Theater or Batsheva, and maybe one day run MOVE|NYC| himself. "I have this vision in my head of creating this huge dance establishment where dancers can come, create and hone in on their magic," he says. "That's what Chanel and Nigel taught me to do."
Join Career Transition For Dancers, a program of The Actors Fund and Dance Business Weekly for a lively discussion with dance artists Chanel DaSilva and Nigel Campbell, co-founders of MOVE|NYC|, about what it takes to develop the mind-set of a business owner—and why that perspective is useful for any dancer who sets out to create and manage a successful career, whether it's performing, teaching or managing. It takes place Saturday, April 25, 1–3 pm EST, and you can sign up here.