When did you start dancing?
"From the time I can remember, I was always dancing. At all my family events I would grab one of my aunts and she would always dance with me. I guess you can say she was the first one to push me to dance even at a young age, and without even a thought of being a professional dancer."
What/who inspires you?
"When it comes to inspiration I have a cumulative of people and things that inspire me. I speak for myself when I say that things inspire me and my life not just my ideal career of being a dancer.I look at people like Jennifer Lopez who had a big role of inspiring me while growing up because I seen how when she became big she took the industry in the grips of her hands and made an empire and a name out of herself. It was the fact that she was considered multi- talented. And even when I was young I knew I wanted to dance, act, design, write music, direct.. All these things and Bam! J.Lo made me see I don't have to do one thing I can do it all. Love inspires me, sex inspires me all the time and I know its a weird but inspiration inspires as well. Someone else who recently has been inspiring me has been Mariah Carey and Ciara (all women I know) Mariah is someone who had this voice but it was her love of her craft that inspires me most,she writes all her music (and made millions doing so) and produces. All this with no fashion line, no perfume, no endorsements, no fashion stylist or publicity stunts. It's that that makes me want to learn everything about dance and how to use it to entertain millions of people. In terms of Ciara I look at the fact that she's so humble and no matter how many haters knock her down..she keeps going. She a unbelievable dancer and its natural look at what goes on in her career and say! No matter what people say Ivan keep doing you.."
What different styles are you into?What do you specialize in?
"Right now I am so into the "soft movements" and I guess Less complicated choreography only because if a dance is "so easy" the harder it is to perform and bring it to life.At least from dancers that I am around on a daily basis.Things like Aaliyah's "Rock the Boat", Janet Jackson's "If "and "That's the way love goes.."
In terms of my dancing ,I really for some reason feels so connected to reggae and dance hall music/ and dancing.That's one area that I am 100% confident in my ability to destroy/demolish someone in a battle. I think its because it comes so natural to my body. I can never stay still."
What has been your most memorable gig since you've started dancing?
"I have a few. When I was in high school my dance team that I started performed at a NYC competition called Music Fest and we won second place; but the reason why this was unforgettable was because I had this crazy idea (after one of my good friends choreographed to Freakum Dress by Beyonce) that the girls
in my group would wear double outfits and the curtains will close and BAM ! they would appear in a freakum dress and no one would expect it. It was seeing that moment and hearing the crowd go nuts that I realized never to doubt my "visions" (as my friends call it) or what I see in my mind and to trust myself.
Another other moment was my 1st paid dance job with a modern company Called MAD about dance. I never danced modern in my entire life, it was such hard work and I was pushed and pushed in the right ways and learned so much from a directors view point, as a dancer,and as a person..And I got paid for my hard work!"
" Love Love Tina Landon! ( She's done everyone in their mother! From Janet,J.Lo,Ricky Martin,Britney Spears,Christina Aguleira,King of Pop,Ciara,) I mean the list goes on.
Paula Abdul is the bomb when you see her stuff.. And her stage work you see her technique.. Amazing!
Jamaica Craft ( she does a lot of Ciara's choreography) I like her because she mixes the way we would dance at parties into choreography. And she always puts one move in Ciaras stuff that I'm like "That is so hot!!"
Tricia Miranda, I found her on YouTube and I'm in love with her work, she even wrote to me on twitter I was so happy!"
"I love Danielle Polanco,Blake Macgrath.(they to me, are the epitome of what dancers should be)
I also have friends that can also count as some of my favorite dancers. One of my best friends Mel who is just amazing,he's so versatile and has a great understanding of dance in every aspect of the word! He is a DANCER! And Right now My friend Jamy,she has this performance aspect that I haven't seen in a while! There are so many people I'm around and dance with! I take something from each to try to be better. "
Who are some of the artists you like to dance to?
"I would love to dance for Ciara..Janet..Jlo..Usher..Chris brown, all artist who can actually dance..so that way I won't be held back or suppressed..
How do you think the city of New York influences the dance world?
" I mean I thinks its the fact New York City is so diverse; it almost seems like this city is the center of the world. NYC is all I know, I see so much drive! Passion and Ambition. It is crazy..I just came from London and honestly NYC will destroy every dancer over there!! I Love London though.. "
What projects are you currently working on?
"Right now I dance with a hip hop Group called World Class.
I am working on some stuff that will focus on myself rather then a group, so I'm gearing up to go professional.. So I'll be doing head shots, dance photos, some videos, and showcasing things that you wouldn't see of my while dancing with my group.
I am also working on this project with two other people called Jane Doe..an all female group. I am so happy with the direction of this female group, I think I can finally be creatively free.I guess you can say I'll be one of the Creative director,I shouldn't even be talking about this..don't want to jinx it.
I will also be in a play in October.. Flexing my acting skills.."
As a dancer, what is the most important thing you feel you have to offer to the dance world?
"The funny thing is,It's not even my dancing that I think I have to offer the dance world, it's my ideas.The things I see in my mind that I know I can make come to life the right way.It's the way I lead, the way I fight for what I believe in, the fact I have standards and won't except anything less, the way I am willing to learn( an ongoing process). I sound so cocky, but I believe in my answer! "
If you could dance with any one person (dead or alive) who would it be?
"I guess everyone would say Michael Jackson and I mean who wouldn't..but I'd pick CIARA.. "
If you could dance in front of any one person (dead or alive) who would it be?
"I would love the chance to dance in front of my Grandma if she was alive.. She only seen me when I was just starting..."
Facebook : Ivan Leon
Twitter : Ivane202