We recently had the chance to chat with dancer Taryn T. Francis. During the interview, Taryn talked about getting her start in the entertainment industry, working alongside Paula Abdul and Michael Jackson, upcoming projects, and more!
1. How did you get your start in the entertainment industry?
I quickly started training outside of my hometown all across the nation, heavily in Los Angeles from master teachers and choreographers. I began taking dance classes with adults by age 6/7. Despite the age requirement to train in the adult classes in Los Angeles, teachers were able to sneak me in and allow me to train because I kept right up with the adults. One thing led to another… in addition to training, I soon got my first agent and began going out on auditions then booking big jobs.
2. What was your first project?
My very first industry job in LA was landing a music video with Paula Abdul- who was someone I really admired at the time!!! I was 8 years old.
3. What has been your favorite project to work on so far?
That is a difficult question to answer because I am so extremely thankful for every opportunity that has come my way thus far. Every job has left a lasting impression and a truly memorable experience. Ultimately, I am most proud of my Star Search experience. Star Search was the greatest talent competition in the world at the time and pioneered the stage for all the hit talent competitions that air today. I remember watching the show glued to the television when I was a young child and just dreaming of being on the show myself someday. I never thought my dream would turn into my reality, and I will cherish every moment of that. From the day I got the call to audition, to the preparation, awaiting to take the stage for the first time, to accomplishing win after win, then finally walking away with the 1993 season title of Junior Dance Grand Champion; the whole thing was a whirlwind! I put my whole heart and soul into that entire experience and am so thankful for my family and teachers who believed in me and supported me every step of the way. For a 9 year old from a small town, that was pretty incredible.
4. What was it like getting to work alongside talent such as Michael Jackson and Paula Abdul?
Insanely Amazing!!! Both artists I admired and respected. Paula- I loved that she was also petite, extremely talented, and simply beautiful! I wanted to be just like her! I asked if I could perform a solo I had prepared for her when I met her on set, and she was very impressed with my talent especially for being so young. Michael- what can I say?! I was awe struck to say the least getting the opportunity to meet and work with the King of Pop himself. In between takes, we kept trying to get him to sing for us but he wouldn’t- he was extremely shy and actually acted just like one of us. He was not all business, but cared about making the experience FUN. After a long exhausting day of shooting followed my photoshoots and interviews, he even played basketball with us at the end of the night!
5. Are you working on anything at the moment?
Yes! I am always working, learning, and evolving forward into my next chapter. I am currently living in Los Angeles working as a Choreographer and Dance and Fitness Expert. I travel the world teaching master classes and judging competitions. As a teacher, I find great fulfillment in sharing what I love to do with others. In addition to teaching, I am currently the Choreographer for Addam’s Family the Musical, part of the Women Fitness Team as a regular monthly contributer, and very busy founding my first nonprofit- Dance with Heart Foundation. Lots of exciting things in the works!
6. What are your social media accounts?
Please check out my website www.TarynTFrancis.com ; IG: @taryntfrancis ; FB: Taryn T. Francis
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