The following is an interview featured in our Vulnerability/Strength issue.
On Oct. 16, Lawrence Devera and Chad Mayate of Poreotics came to the University of Florida to host a dance workshop as part of Asian Kaleidoscope Month. Winners of America’s Best Dance Crew Season 5, the six-member Asian American dance crew has been gaining ground in the American entertainment industry.
Sparks wants to know. What drove you to pursue dancing?
Law: For me, it was just family because I would watch them dance at family parties. It’s just something I wanted to try, and once I started, I was like, man, this is so much fun. I just can’t get more out of it. I was 17 at the time and I wanted to take it more seriously and try to get something out of it.
Chad: I didn’t even mean to get into dance. My friends just got me into dancing and then from there I got crazy and started training. I met all of these guys [points to Law]. Poreotics.
What does your family think of your dancing?
Law: They support it fully now. They never used to support it because we never made it like a job. It was just a hobby, just for fun. Well, now that it’s like a job, they support us more. Actually, like 100% now.
Chad: My parents are like my No. 1 fans. They’ve been coming to my shows even before I made Poreotics. Once I made Poreotics. Filipino parents, you know. [imitates family] Oh! That’s my son!
How did they react when they found you were going to be on TV for being Poreotics?
Law: They were excited. My parents were excited for me. They didn’t realize they weren’t going to see me often, but it’s cool because they understand that that’s the sacrifice we made to live this life and continue on with this passion.
Chad: My parents went to every ABDC show we were ever at. They stopped by the hotel after even though they weren’t supposed to. I mean, it’s my parents. What are they going to do? That’s my parents.
What do you think of Poreotics making it big in America as an Asian American dance crew?
Law: I’m not surprised. There’s a lot of Asian dance crews out there and they’re all dope. If you look at the SoCal dance community, it’s like 80% Asian American. It’s crazy. Yeah, we’re taking over.
Chad: [throws Poreotics sign up] This is going to be the world. Just kidding. [laughs]
Law: It’s cool. We got to be thankful.
How hard is it for someone that is Asian American to break into the entertainment scene?
Law: It’s a little difficult. A little more difficult than before but now in the industry, it’s starting to be more Asian Americans on television, on commercials and on movies. It’s cool. We have our foot in the door, but now we’re trying to get everybody to be a part of it. I like how it’s growing. I like that its getting better than before.
What is it like to represent us as Asian Americans?
Law:We’re proud of it. We’re proud to be Filipino.
Chad: Filipinos represent! And the Vietnamese in the team. It’s half Filipino and half Vietnamese. Three Filipinos and three Vietnamese.
What’s your next step in the entertainment industry or what other projects are you trying to do?
Law: We’re trying to work on a reality show, trying to keep the buzz on right now. It’s still in the works but we’re going to be pitching it up real soon. Hopefully the network will be picking it up.
What is it like working with big stars like Bruno Mars and Justin Bieber?
Law: It’s a lot of fun. It’s a blessing to be able to work with artists like that. It’s cool to meet them and [they’re] kind of just like us. They’re just everyday normal people that are very talented.
Last thing. What are your last words of wisdom to the people at UF or dancers in general?
Law: Keep doing what you’re doing. Don’t let anybody stop you. If you want to keep dancing, then dance. It’s not really a big problem.
Chad: Be yourself. That’s where the creativity and dancing comes from, and, when you’re yourself, it’s your own identity. That’s how you make it.