Age Is Nothing But a Number:
My Interview with Dancer Stephen Jesse
By Shanice, age 15, South Africa
Sweet Designs Featured Writer
Did we mention that he's only fifteen?
Describe yourself in three words.
Energetic, enthusiastic, determined.
How did you get into dancing?
I used to hate it until I was forced to learn it. Someone had mocked me in front of a crowd and I couldn't retaliate because I couldn't dance. I wanted to prove that person wrong so I went off to learn dancing and came back to receive my victory against him. However, I pulled off my first performance in the church, and that's when I found my love for dance.
What's your favorite type of dance? Is there a form that's easier to perform for you?
I do a dance style called popping and locking. But I truly admire b-boying.
You won a contract to perform at Ushaka Marine World for a year. That's quite a feat at your young age. Have you considered dancing as a possible career?
From the time I started and still am.
If not dancing, what would you like to go into?
I don't know.
You're regarded as a "rising young dance sensation." What are your thoughts on that?
I never heard that before but I think that's a bit overrated. There are many dancers younger than me and better than me ... way better, so I'll just say that I'm not THAT good, I'm okay.
Have you always wanted to be a dancer?
No, like I said, I used to hate it until I tried it. Only goes to show that you can't hate something until you know what it is.
Who are your inspirations?
My dad, because he is always pushing me to do better than what I'm doing already. So does my brother.
Would you say that your life, or the people in it, have changed after you won a few competitions?
It sure did. I have come to realise that I have a God-given gift, and because it's God-given I need to work hard to reach the full potential of that gift. More people have come to like me because they have an idea of who I am through my dancing, so a lot has changed.
What are your plans for the future?
I'm going to live to acknowledge who gave me this gift and I'm going to seize every opportunity He gives me.
Advice for aspiring dancers out there?
Do what you love, love what you do, and NEVER GIVE UP!