How did the parents feel when you came to them with the reality tv show?
I don’t think the parents were nervous about it, for several reasons. One of the biggest reasons is because they know that I am extremely over protective. And if I felt like it was going to be a good idea or something that could potentially turn into something amazing for the team or for each child individually then they’re definitely all for it. They’re definitely all for it. Now, everybody wants their daughter to be a shining star, who wouldn’t? But at the same time, those the decisions that were made about who’s cast does not fall on me. So that was the good thing for me, I could take myself out of it. I wouldn’t have to deal with that part of it. But I think overall, the parents were really excited for this opportunity.
One thing that always strikes me and makes me chuckle is that the parents stand outside to watch practices. I know you let them in for a short period of time, do you ever anticipate letting them in again?
Well, initially the parents were allowed inside because there was a lot of favoritism floating around. Because me and Mimi are friends and people think that if Camryn gets this or that it’s because we’re friends and she’s picking on my child. You know that kind of conversation. I’m one of those type of people that believe in ‘I can show you better than I can tell you.’ And if you see that your daughter is not doing what she’s supposed to do, then you’ll understand why she’s being cut. It worked for probably two weeks but one day I let them in and they were just so loud. The parents would not be quiet and were very distracting to the girls. And I said, ‘Get the hell out.’ And they were looking around like ‘What the hell?’ Get out now. You go or take your daughter with you and both of you go. Everybody kind of went out the room and were kind of confused. And I remember Mimi saying, we were scared, we didn’t know what to do. I said y’all was talking too damn loud, you couldn’t hear me say shut up. You were back there running your mouth. And that situation is what really set it off and they’ve been standing outside ever since. It’s been a couple of years now.
It seems like the girls actually prefer their parents outside, do you see that?
I do. I can see that. They need to know that it’s ok for them to make a mistake without their parents being that drill sergeant and that barking ‘hey that’s not right, move your feet this way, move your feet that way.’ I’m the only coach that’s in the building. I’m the only dance teacher in the building. I’m the person that’s in charge. I don’t need any sideline helpers. There are no assistant coaches, I got this. And the girls realize that when their parents are outside, they can make those mistakes freely and know that it’s ok to mess up. And one thing I try to explain, to the parents too, is they can take the yelling and screaming from me because I’m their coach. As a mom, you’re the nurturer. You’re the person who’s going to say, ‘Oh, it’s ok. I love you regardless, don’t worry about it.’ And when you start barking and yelling, who do they have to go to? If you’re yelling and I’m yelling who’s that person whose going to provide comfort?
What can we expect from the remainder of this season and next?
You’re going to see a lot of changes in the dance style. You’re going to see a lot of changes in the leadership styles of all the girls. You’re going to see Crystianna (pictured in the center above) start to speak more than she probably ever has in her life. You’re going to see the girls grow as dancers. You’re going to see the parents grow more attached to their dancers and also start to respect me and my decisions a lot more. You’re going to see a lot more drama. Oh God. A lot more drama. A lot more stand battles, a lot more wins a lot more loses. There’s a lot more of everything.
You can watch “Bring It” on Lifetime, every Wednesday, including tonight, at 9/8c.