Straight from LA, Heavyweight Dancer and Choreographer Andre Fuentes was recently in Australia running Jazz, Hip Hop & Lyrical
workshops at Elite Dance Agencies across three of our prime States, along with Tony Czar, during the October month.
Andre's career in dance came about at 17 years young, initially instigated when his PE teacher had been observing him on several occasion busting
moves in the school grounds, admiring and acknowledging his uniqueness and talent. She (his PE Teacher) then approached Andre and encouraged
him to pursue dancing further. Andre shares his story, with a gleam of light in his eyes, wearing an enormous smile, as he thanks her for where he is
today. She gave him that added push, belief and organised his first audition, after hearing through the grape vine, that Michael Jackson was taking
auditions for back up-dancers. I can't begin to imagine how many dancers were present for this audition, Andre took the opportunity and followed
suit. Too his surprise he was the perfect candidate for the calling, he was granted a fulltime scholarship from the academy in dance and
performance, and to boot, dancing with the legendary Michael Jackson, and that was his first job!! Shortly after his studies he flew to Japan where
he was offered a position to teach dancers and students to better their skills. Today he may have a fluency of the Japanese language, though at first,
he found it difficult to communicate with his students as he couldn't speak their tongue. Throughout the challenges, Andre came to the realisation
that this was more of a blessing, as it refined him even further as a dancer. Having to use body language in order to communicate with his students,
via movement and feelings rather than speech.
Andre has been in the business for over ten years, and it has been quite a ride from when he first began. He has grown and developed in every
direction as a dancer, choreographer and person. Andre is always on the go and contributing to the community, running workshops
throughout LA and other parts of the world, continually inspiring those around him. He has had a hand in TV and Film such as "The Birdcage",
"The Longest Yard" and "Kids Incorporated" just to name a few. Andre also is Britney's mentor and has been her dancer and choreographer for
nearly a decade, just recently he won the Australian MTV music video awards, for Britney Spears 'Circus' as the 'Best Choreographer'. He also
won the very same award back home in the US for the MTV VMA awards. Though as much as he appreciates the acknowledgement, no
award can size up the amount of people he has inspired along the way. What drives him as an artist and teacher, is the ability to touch and bring
out the best in humanity, which is undescribably enriching for Andre, and it shows in his work.
After chatting with Andre, I was welcomed to sit into his class, which also was one of the final classes for the evening. Andre finalised his
workshop, by preparing a Lyrical dance session, the routine composed of contemporary movements attached with emotional depth. A slow
paced dance of rhythm and flow yet a strong message combined for his students and dancers to take home with them. The dancers gathered
around Andre as he delivered a brief speech regarding true self and respect, before leading them into the routine, in short "Never forget who
you are and where you came from". It is not hard to see why Andre is highly respected and fond of, his positive outlook, generous spirit and
energy that he exudes is quite inspiring, not only to his peers but to his students that are eager to break into the industry. Which is essential to
their survival, to remain grounded and honour themselves and others as Andre does so effortlessly.
It appears its not the first time the students at Dream Academy have engaged with Andre either, some have travelled as far as LA to participate in
the workshops and programs available to them, which are extremely popular programmes for the seriously devoted dance divas. Though as the
night came to an end, I felt moved by Andre's routine, by far intriguing to watch. The studio was still buzzing of excitement and even I left inspired
to take up dancing again. It was a great pleasure to see some of Andre's work and to be there in his presence, he truly is an amazing mentor, and I
encourage anyone that is serious about their dancing careers, to take advantage of the workshops available. For those In Melbourne, Australia, I can
recommend The Dream Academy in Williamstown.
The making of the 'Circus' - Andre Dancer /Choreographer - And winner of music dance video MTV award
Andre's Reel and Behind the Scenes
The Dream Academy has been established since 1995, with 2 studio located in Williamstown & Niddrie. They offer all styles of
dance for all ages & levels as well as singing, music, acting & modelling. The studios are fully facilitated professional venues. The
Dream Academy runs internationally accredited exams as well as competitions in which many titles (national & world) have been
achieved by their competition 'Dream Teams'. The studio is owned by Jodie Cordina (Head of the dance department and current
professional choreographer/dancer) & James Leigh (Heads the music dept and is an original member of the renowned 80's band
Psuedo Echo). The studio also runs an in-house talent agency offering their students professional work in the entertainment industry.
The studio on occasion hosts workshops with elite international choreographers as this year with Andre Funetes and Tony Czar
2009. Last year The Dream Academy also had Tucker Barkley (Britney Spears dancer) & Christopher Jones ('You Got Served'
movie) as well as Andre Fuentes & Tony Czar from the USA run workshops at their studio.
The Dream Academy
Tel: +61 3 9399-2502
Add: 22a Tennyson St,
|The Inspiring Choreographer Andrea Fuentes
And Mentor Of Britney Spears
|Choreographer Andre Fuentes Works With
Britney Spears Presented By Kaliopy
|The Library Hotel Collection