Make It Rain with KWAY

Make It Rain with KWAY

Have you ever danced in the rain? With the help of French heritage brand K-Way, this colorful routine yields rain and shine.

Have you ever danced in the rain? With the help of French heritage brand K-Way, this colorful routine yields rain and shine.

Photography: Jamie Morgan

Styling: Anna Trevelyan

Text: Abraham Martinez

This article appears in the pages of V122: The Winter Issue, on newsstands now. Pre-order your copy at shop.vmagazine.com.

There’s no better shield against the elements than with a KWAY nylon fit, as seen inside this editorial-recital from V122. Watch these contemporary dancers express themselves, taking center stage along the way. Ahead, we interviewed members of the cast for this artistic tour-de-force, where rain allows for unbridled creativity to shine.

UMI AKIYOSHI

V: What was your first interaction with dance?

UA: My older sister was a dancer, and I would follow her to the studio and I kind of got hooked on that. I have been dancing for as long as I can remember—I went to high school and undergrad for dance. Right now, I am in a show called Sleep No More.

V: Have you ever danced in the rain?

UA: I have certainly kissed in the rain. That’s kind of close, right? (Laughs)

GRACE VALENTINE

V: Tell me how you got started with dance.

GV: I started break dancing when I was 7 years old. Actually, I saw Cameron Boyce dancing on Jessie and I was like ‘I want to do that.’ So he was my inspiration for that.

V: Who are some dancers that you’ve looked up to in addition to Cameron [Boyce]?

GV: Ian Eastwood the most!

V: What about his dance style moves you?

GV: He changes it up but he always keeps it the same style no matter what song he is doing. It always just tells a different story.

V: Have you ever danced in the rain?

GV: I don’t think I have.

V: Do you think you might one day?

GV: Yeah, I mean, I don’t mind the rain.

V: What’s the one song that can always get you dancing?

GV: I have to think about that. I don’t know… [Laughs] “Party Rock Anthem” by LMFAO.

MEGAN WRIGHT

V: When did you start dancing?

MW: I started studying ballet when I was three, and I bailed on it when I was about 8. Then [I] got back into it around 13 and started taking it really seriously. I went to a ballet boarding school.

V: What was that like?

MW: It was great! It was one of the best experiences of my life. It really saved me as a teenager.

V: What’s one lesson you learned at boarding school? Was it more technique or kind of just general life lessons?

MW: I think the most important thing I learned at that school is if you are not a good person, it doesn’t matter how good you are.

V: What’s one song that makes you want to dance?

MW: Probably “Young Americans” by David Bowie.

V: Have you ever danced in the rain?

MW: I have not. I have run buses in the rain, I have been miserable in the rain, but no, I like to dance in warm dry places [Laughs]

 

XULY WILLIAMS

V: Tell me a little bit about your favorite style of dance.

XW: My mother is a choreographer so I was always just dancing around the house!

V: Did she teach you any special moves?

XW: She never taught me anything; I would just watch her and mock [her].

V: What are you listening to right now?

XW: I am listening to a lot of Mozart.

V: Where do you listen to Mozart?

XW: Where do I listen to it?

V: Yeah.

XWL: Probably in my dorm room. I’ll read some and listen to Mozart after a good morning ballet class.

V: Have you ever danced in the rain?

XW: Other than today, no, and I don’t think I will. It’s not something where I was like, Damn I missed out on dancing in the rain because rain is cold and it is water. If I want to dance in the rain I will take a shower.

 

ZHENG ZHANG

V: Tell me a little bit about the choreography from this routine.

ZZ: It’s very minimalistic but really expressive. I think the colors and the atmosphere really influenced what [we] are looking to do with it. I know Jamie talked about animalistic so we might play with stuff like that later and there is definitely that crew mentality—like moving together, or follow the leader; stuff like that.

V: As a dancer what is sort of your biggest challenge but also your biggest reward?

ZZ: I think working with new people but then the biggest reward is when you get to see them cohesively working together.

 

MOROCCO

V: Tell me a little bit about your favorite style of dance.

M: I think my favorite style of dance is contemporary or modern; just like movement without rules or boundaries. My favorite style of dance is more so just whatever I am feeling at the moment, that’s how I also enjoy myself dancing, you know?

V: What kind of music are you listening to right now?

M: I listen to a lot of everything. I bet everyone says that (Laughs)

V: They do!

M: I listen to a lot of rap and hip hop but also classical but more so like neo-classical, modern classical; like Max Richter and stuff like that. [Also] Frank Ocean. You know, chill vibes. (Laughs)

V: Tell me a little bit about today on set; how has it been so far?

M: It’s been good. I am into the cast! Diversity is shown which I love always, and I think so far we are connecting well. It’s going to be a really nice ending production but so far so good!

V: If there was one place in the world you could dance in where would it be?

M: In Morocco in the desert!

 

JESS HU

V: When did you first start dancing?

JH: I first started dancing in Salem, Oregon. I learned breakdancing at the Boys & Girls Club and I entered my first one-on-one B-Girl/B-Boy dance battle. Around that time there were not many girls that breaked, so I learned from a bunch of dudes. We would take road trips to Portland and Seattle to compete. I come from more of a battle background but it’s transitioned into showcasing [and] choreography. It’s great.

V: Do you have a favorite choreographed number from a music video?

JH: Honestly, Missy Elliot, man. Missy Elliot is the reason why I started dancing. Because of the majority of the things I do, I am self-taught. I watched a lot of Missy Elliot videos growing up and a lot of old break videos.

V: What’s one place in the world you’d love to dance in?

JH: That’s a good question! The Pyramids. I think that would be really beautiful and aligning and spiritual. Also [outer] space would be kind of cool with zero gravity—listening to music in space and dancing.

 

LUCAS KLINGE

V: Tell me a little bit about when you first started dancing?

LK: My mother was a body-mind centering worker, so that’s how I got used to movement. Then I did contact improv [before] classic ballet for like 20 years.

V: What’s the last song you listened to?

LK: I don’t know why, but I just have that Gloria Estefan song stuck in my head.

V: Which one?

LK: (Hummed ‘Conga’ by Gloria Estefan)

V: What does dancing mean to you? Or what has it come to mean to you since becoming a dancer?

LK: I’ve been thinking about dance as sort of a creation tool, and how you can create something out of nothing; it’s as close to magic as you can get.

Credits:

Makeup Maki Ryoke (Streeters) Hair Shingo Shibata (The Wall Group)

Talent Megan Wright, Jess Hu, Lucas Klinge, Jess Hu, Umi Akiyoshi (Stetts

Management), Grace Valentine (NY Model Management), Morocco B (DNA Models),

Xuly Williams (Ford Models), Zheng Zhang (IMG)

Manicure Eichi Matsunaga Set Designer Chelsea Maruskin (Art Department)

Production Nathalie Akiya (Kranky Productions) Choreographer Nicole Von Arx

Digital technician Jeanine Robinson Photo assistant Haren Mehta

Stylist assistant Kristtian Chevere Makeup assistant Mikaila Hutchens

Hair assistant Mai Kimura, Julianne Laney Set design assistant Zachary Maruskin

Production assistant Vivian Song, Jeff Rabinak, Hannah Holbrook

Choreographer Assistant Eric Berry Location BKLYN Studios by SLATE Studios

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