Culture & Entertainment

Teen actors: Stars of the The Next Step dream big

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Culture & Entertainment

Teen actors: Stars of the The Next Step dream big

HERO_S2 ATroupe (studio background)   Remember that show you loved as a kid that you would never miss? For my 10-year-old daughter it is Family Channel's The Next Step. The show follows the lives of an elite group of young dancers who train at The Next Step studio and dream of winning a national dance title. I watch the show alongside my girl and definitely see the appeal. The cast is young and talented, which is inspiring a ton of kids to tell their parents that they want to dance and act too—just like the cast of The Next Step. So what advice do some of the stars of the show have for kids who want to pursue a career in acting or dance? Dream big. And for parents? Support their goals. Lamar Johnson plays West, a former street crew member who helps The Next Step win a spot at nationals. "I really do believe this quote, 'Whatever you set your mind to, you can do it.'  It is so true. If you really have a passion, keep doing it," he says. "My mom was my biggest supporter from a young age. She's always been supportive and really let me make my own decisions and mistakes and learn from them." Brittany Raymond plays Riley, who was to dance a duet at nationals with boyfriend James, until they broke up. "Even when I auditioned for the show I remember thinking 'I am not going to get this.' I remember all my friends going and my dad actually was the one who said: "You are good enough. Just go for it. You never know." It is very scary to this day to go and audition for something and to try something that you are not comfortable with, but do it and go for it. Just push yourself because you never know what you can do until you try." Logan Fabbro plays Amanda, a dancer from rival studio, Elite, who has joined The Next Step (but is actually still with Elite). "It is great to be able to tell kids go after their dreams like we did. Seven and eight year olds tell us that we are their role models but we are only seven years older than them," she says. "We try to be as positive role models as we can with our fans." Jordan Clark plays Giselle, a dancer who lost her spot in A-troupe but earned a place back on the team. "Our families are huge supporters of our careers and of the show and anything that they could do to help, they did. They took us to dance class, took us to acting, singing, they paid for everything, drove us everywhere. I don't know what I would do without my parents and their support. I think that is really key, to have a nice base at home and have the drive and the passion to do what you need to do." Trevor Tordjman plays laid-back James who is trying to win back Riley, his former girlfriend. "For me, getting here was all about never underestimating myself. I knew I wanted to dance. That's what made me happy. Do what you love to do and it will show. It is possible to reach your dreams," he says. "I am so grateful to my parents. They were open to whatever I wanted to do." When the series left off, two key members had quit the team, rival squad, Elite, had earned a spot in the national competition and relationships at the studio were falling apart. Now, with nationals fast approaching, A-troupe needs to set aside their differences and work together if they want to have a shot at winning it all. The Next Step, Season 2, Part 2 premieres Friday, Sept. 12, at 7:30 p.m. on Family Channel.    
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Teen actors: Stars of the The Next Step dream big

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