Thursday, October 22, 2009

Meanwhile back in the dance world...

My agent Anastasia Miller is the I met her many years ago when she took over at Bloc NYC when I was their client, when she moved to Clear Talent Group I followed her. The reasons are numerous.
1)She always pushes for me.
2)I am on her top 5 list of girls to call
3)She believes in me as an artist and as a person
4)She can out drink me
5)She is a dog lover
6)She appeared in My DVD "From Agents to Auditions" for free just because she loves me.

The secret to a great dance career is a great agent. Hands down, you cannot make it without one. This lady does everything for me. Finds the auditions, sends me, deals with money, contracts, deals, dates and places. She makes it easy and stress free to just show up and do what I am good at and leave all the things I am bad at (see above) to her. More than that though, she is a friend. A beautiful one.

This is a great interview with her from Gendance and super informative and helpful to those looking for break into this crazy world. Enjoy!

She’s the rep with the hottest rep. And if she reps you, consider yourself lucky. Take the lead from this gifted gal who’s behind some of the biggest talent, including Beyonce’s dancers and videos. The stars hire her, but gendance thinks she’s a star herself. Kudos to Anastasia Miller, Director of Dance and Choreography at Clear Talent Group NY, for her passion and dedication. Get inspired - her success is as sweet as she is.

Anastasia Miller:
Tell us about your dance background and traveling the world with Starpower.
I grew up as a gymnast who transitioned into dance. Gary Pate (owner of Starpower) taught me from the beginning. He was like a dad to us and still looks out for me to this day. I now judge for Starpower Nationals and also conduct agency seminars with his convention “Wild”.

What was your most memorable performance?
Wow…that’s tough. I’d have to say performing in Brisbane, Australia. We represented the USA for World Expo 1988. (I totally just aged myself.) But, I got to meet Bart Connors, my fav male gymnast in those days. I was star struck for sure.

You work with lots of hip hop mavens that our readers would be star struck by. We heard hip hop’s your favorite style. Why’s that?
Growing up outside Washington, DC pretty much determined what I liked. The music scene back then was so cool. R&B/Hip Hop was the way of life… especially as a dancer.

If you could change one thing about the dance world, what would it be?
Dance is so hot right now. There’s not much to complain about. Our industry is growing more and more every year. If I had to change one thing, I would want dancers to get noticed as more than just “background” talent. The athleticism and training that go in to being a dancer is difficult. I think the world is finally seeing that, so keep up with the change!

How did you become an agent?
I always wanted to be an agent… even while I was getting my business degree in college. I moved to LA right after graduation with hopes of “meeting the right people” to break into the biz. I was hired first by bloc Talent Agency. I worked with bloc for about eight years in LA and also in NY. I’m now Director of Choreography & Dance at Clear Talent Group NY. I can’t express how amazing it is to work with top talent on both coasts. I’m such a proud mama!

How did you get to the top?
Well, first, thank you for saying “I’m at the Top”! (Haha). I still can’t believe it’s been nine years. Time definitely flies. I think having strong relationships and KEEPING those relationships are key to longevity as an agent. I’m a people person for sure… supporting your clients and also your casting directors/producers/choreographers is what keeps the jobs rolling in. Also, never stop reaching out and developing new connections. You always want to be involved as much as possible. It keeps you fresh in everyone’s mind.

What’s the best part about representing big name talent, like Beyonce’s dancers?
I love representing those “big name” dancers. That’s what we strive for right?! I couldn’t be more proud and happy for those dancers and their success.

What kind of person do you love to represent?
I look for someone who’s not only extremely talented, but more importantly, professional, respectful of others, and who has a good reputation. Too often you hear about a dancer who isn’t hired again because of the way they acted on a job. That type of personality doesn’t represent the dancer or our company well. When we have open call auditions, I watch dancers from the moment they sign in at the front desk till the moment they walk out our door. Your attitude says everything… it can make you or break you.

What’s your best advice for performers?
Basically, know your business. Research the people who are moving up in the world and the companies they work for. Networking is very important in our industry. Taking class isn’t enough… you need to be involved and be aware of the business. Knowledge is everything, but more importantly, you’ll fall in love with dance and your community all over again when you reach out and become an educated performer.

Besides dance, you love…

Peanut butter, ice cream (preferably together), Madonna, Summer Fridays at our office (ha!), and my wittle doggie Oliver. Thanks so much gendance!