By Sheena Barnett/NEMS Daily Journal
TUPELO – Tupelo Ballet turns 30 this year, and executive director Sharon Long and crew are celebrating in the best way possible, with more dancing.
Tupelo Ballet welcomes Rasta Thomas’ Stars of Dance featuring the Bad Boys of Dance on Sept. 23 for an anniversary performance.
World renowned dancer, choreographer and gymnast Thomas started the Bad Boys of Dance in 2007. He was looking for a brotherhood of dancers, and he found that in his new dance company.
“The audience had always been mesmerized and hypnotized by the male dancer,” Rasta said in a phone interview with the Daily Journal. “And I definitely wanted to create a company that had a strong bond offstage and onstage. It makes it believable, when you’re having a good time on stage.”
Thomas works closely with his team, and that shows in their performances.
“It’s a brotherhood. We’re all very close, and my wife works in the dance company as well. It’s a wonderful, special thing,” he said.
Since its inception, the Stars of Dance featuring the Bad Boys of Dance has toured the world, and its shows consist of all styles of dance. Thomas called a Bad Boys of Dance show exciting, sexy and athletic.
Putting together a Bad Boys of Dance show takes hours of work.
“It’s six to eight hours a day,” Thomas said. “It’s a hard job. It definitely requires a youthful ability, and the kids in our company are 18 to 25.”
Thomas has expanded his dance empire to include Pretty Girls of Dance and Tap Stars. His heart remains with the Bad Boys, though.
“I’m going to make a little appearance, a little cameo appearance” at the Tupelo show, he said.
“If you like great dancing and a great time, this is the show for you,” he said. “If you think you won’t like a dance show, give this one a chance. If you’ve been to a million dance shows, you’re gonna love this one the most.”
WHAT: Rasta Thomas’ Stars of Dance featuring
the Bad Boys of Dance
WHEN: 7:30 p.m. Sept. 23
WHERE: Tupelo High School Performing Arts
INFO: (662) 844-1928