12 Sep
This weeks Dancer/Choreographer shout out goes to Rodrigo Basurto. Born and raised in Guadalajara Mexico, Rodrigo started dancing at the age of 4. In 1996, Rodrigo studied at the Opus Art and Talent Dance School for two years where he exceeded in many dance styles including breakdancing.  In 1999, he joined the popular breakdancing crew called “Family B-boys”, the reigning international champions for three consecutive years while competing internationally against the best in the world. During this time, Rodrigo gained experienced dancing with very talented artists and decided to further pursue his dancing career in Toronto, Canada.
Rodrigo specializes in Hip Hop and choreography, but also has many years of experience in contemporary hip-hop, breakdancing, salsa, acro, poppin, locking, and capoeira (brazilian martial arts). Over the years, Rodrigo has had the opportunity to work and train with some of the industries most sought after choreographers including Luther Brown, Laurie Ann Gibson, Leon Blackwood, Marty Kudelka, Nick Bass, Misha Gabriel, and Patrick Chang. Accomplishing a major milestone this year proving that hard work and dedication pay off Rodrigo joined the cast of So You Think You Can Dance Canada season 4.
Rodrigo has been teaching around the world since 2004 and recently created a Dance program geared towards young males called lil BBoys. Through this program he is able to contribute is experience and training by teaching aspiring young hip hop and breakdancers.
Find out what Rodrigo had to say in this weeks shout out…………
Nikki: Do you remember the first time you started dancing?
Rodrigo: The first time I started dancing I was living in Mexico and I use to go to this all ages club in the afternoon after school and watch the BBoys battle each other. I wanted to learn so badly so that day after the club my friend and I started break dancing in the park and trying to do crazy stuff and after that day we didn’t stop rehearsing 5 to 6 a week sometimes 8 hrs a day.
Nikki:  Do you remember the first song you choreographed to? (Or your earliest memory)
Rodrigo: The first song I choreographed to was for a break dance duet and I used Curtis Blow (the breaks)
Nikki:  Your personal advice for dancers when it comes to free styling?
Rodrigo: Free styling is really important. It’s what sets u apart a Dancer, free style is a chance to express yourself by dance and show what u got and who you are and what you do and how do you do it!!!!
Nikki:  Getting in the zone to choreograph, what does it take for you?
Rodrigo: Choreography for me is a special every time. When I have an idea in my head I cant wait to start working on it!! It takes lots of time and work to build your unique choreo style.
Nikki:  Who are some of your biggest influences in the Dance industry?
Rodrigo: So many people starting with MJ to Bob Fosse to Usher to Luther Brown, Nappy Tabs, Marty Kudelka, Misha Gabriel, Lyle Beniga…… So many people 🙂
Nikki:  Name a Toronto Choreographer you enjoy working with and why?
Rodrigo: Luther Brown he is my mentor and the reason why I’m here!! Every time I work with him its always on a professional level no matter what u do with him he will bring you up a notch or two! He respects his dancers and that is really important as a leader. He loves what he does and he is just the best choreographer. 
Nikki:  Name one of your favorite artists to work with and why?
Rodrigo: I loved working with lady gaga on the MMVA’s she was amazing and so professional. She is humble and passionate about what she does! It was a great experience and seeing how hard she worked made me work even harder to make the most out of every opportunity
Nikki:  What was it like being on So You Think You Can Dance Canada Season 4 and making it to the Top 20?
Rodrigo: Being part of season 4 SYTYCD Canada meant a lot to me it was a goal that I was aiming to achieve in my life and finally I did.  It made me realize where I am in dance, I’m just so grateful to say that I was chosen out of thousands to be part of an amazing group of Dancers in Canada. From where I came from to how I got there is just a great feeling of accomplishment.
Nikki: Are you currently working on any projects? 
Rodrigo: Well right now I’m teaching a workshop called H.A.M. all over the Country. I will be heading to Mexico at the end of this year for a big project I can’t talk about just yet 😉  
Nikki: Name some qualities you think Toronto Dancers possess?
Rodrigo:  Toronto dancers are so unique its really insane how every time we are in-group of dancer from all over the world people can usually point us out!!  They know Canada style were so versatile and humble 🙂 
Nikki: Any advice for emerging dancers and choreographers working/training in Toronto?
Rodrigo: Just work hard dancers keep training non-stop. There is always going to be someone better than you and the styles are always changing. For new choreographers keep working on your craft that is the only way to get better. The world of choreography is hard but keep going it’s like learning a new language it takes time.


Check out some of Rodrigo’s journey on SYTYCDC…….


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