Choreographer Parris Goebel Born to Dance
If you were one of more than 500 million recent YouTube views for Justin Bieber’s song “Sorry” and were dazzled by the dancing, know that the moves originated from the mind of New Zealand-born choreographer Parris Goebel. The Los Angeles Times talks with Goebel about her rise, her preparations for Janet Jackson’s tour and how YouTube has expanded the audience for contemporary dance.
Choreography for Nicki Minaj? Missy Elliott? Jennifer Lopez? Cirque Du Soleil’s Michael Jackson ONE? Goebel has done those as well.
Goebel also choreographed the film Born to Dance, which premiered at the Toronto Film Festival last year. The movie, directed by Tammy Davis and starring Tia-Taharoa Maipi, Australian Idol winner Stan Walker and Fame star Kherington Payne, is about a Maori teen discovered by a more famous dance crew through YouTube. The plot is reminiscent of how Goebel learned to dance, how she was discovered and how her fame has grown.
“I do a lot for my YouTube clips. I do a lot of choreography, and everything I do, I imagine it through the lens. It’s something that I enjoy,” Goebel explains.
“[Born to Dance] is very raw,” she says. “The storyline is very cool and it’s very cultural. I think people will be able to see what’s so special about New Zealand hip-hop dancing, which people ask me all the time. When they see this film, they will get a glimpse of our country. They’ll see where we’re from and our culture and our roots. On top of that, the whole film is filled with New Zealand talent, so you get an idea of what we’re about and why we’re strong.”
Original article by Jevon Phillips, Los Angeles Times, January 7, 2016.