Thursday, April 3, 2008

Interview with "Step It Up & Dance"’s Jerry Mitchell

As a choreographer, Broadway and film veteran Jerry Mitchell has guided the dainty footsteps of a dragged-out Harvery Fierstein in Hairspray, a blind Al Pacino in Scent of a Woman, and he’s coached hundreds of hot nearly naked chorus boys and girls in the hugely popular annual New York fundraising spree of exhibitionism and showy sass that is Broadway Bares. He scored a Tony for his work on the 2004 revival of La Cage Aux Folles and he directed and choreographed the current Broadway smash Legally Blonde. But did all that prepare him for taking on Nomi Malone?

This week Mitchell debuts as the co-host, alongside Showgirls survivor Elizabeth Berkley, on the new Bravo reality show Step It Up & Dance. Twelve hot-stepping dancers will compete to score a chunk of prize money, and get recognized by some of the fiercest choreographers working today. And — shocking news! — four of the six male contestants are gay — as is the lovely Mr. Mitchell himself.

All this means it’s time to quiz Mitchell about this latest super-gay Bravo TV series, and whether we can cope with yet another dance-centric reality show. Plus, he also gabs about effeminate dancers, sleeping with cast members (a big no-no!), his favorite divas and, of course, what it’s like to work alongside the world’s most famous (or is that infamous?) showgirl of all.

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