Whyley Yoshimura / “WHYLEY!” It’s not often I scream someone’s name in their face when I see them. But… WHYLEY! As in Whyley Yoshimura. I met him when we still went to Loft. He was with a crowd that looked like they walked off the stage of American Dance Idol Best Dancers In The World With The Stars (or something like that). Seeing Yoshimura and his crew would mean world-class entertainment on the dance floor, and that would only be when they gave 70%. If this guy goes for 100%, forget about it. I bumped into him on Saturday, back home in Hawaii, and just had to ask him some questions.
WHYLEY! You’re back! Where’ve you been??
I was touring around Asia, North America and Canada with Janet Jackson as one of her dancers. I’m about to embark on a European tour, but for now I’m just hanging out in Hawaii until Saturday.
Janet Jackson huh. No big deal. PS: WHAT! How did you get that gig?
I originally wanted to move to New York, but I met Gil Duldulao [Janet’s choreographer, also from Hawaii] and he became my mentor and gave me the idea of moving to LA. So I went, took amazing classes, danced with phenomenal dancers, saw all of the lights and it was over. I knew LA was where I wanted to be.
So that’s your life huh? Like, your normal day to day job?
I work as a dancer doing music videos and live performances. I aspire to keep working with huge, mainstream artists, so it’s necessary for me to be in LA. Funny fact: I used to dance for Tani Lynn Fujimoto when she used to do music when we were teeny boppers! We used to play Ala Moana Centerstage. But that’s as far as it went for pop singers in the 808!
Los Angeles, huh? I love it there. How’s the nightlife?
The nightlife in LA is fun. There’s always some cool bar or pub with a good DJ or cool band. I try to stay away from any “Hollywood” type of club. They tend to be too pretentious. That’s why I prefer Hawaii nightlife, especially Chinatown. Nobody goes there to show off. It’s about relaxing, seeing your friends, dancing your butt off, running into CW and having a good time. Plus, the house parties/beach parties here rock!
Advice for someone that wants to follow your career path? I know I see some damn good dancers when I’m out in Chinatown…
I’m like anyone else, a kid who could dance and had big dreams. The first step is to believe in yourself. It starts with baby steps. Putting yourself out there, not being afraid to get cut and never giving up. Always put your best foot forward, work hard, don’t get distracted and stay focused. Once you start to see big things happening, you’ll realize you can do anything you want. Anything is possible. And always remember to stay true to who you are.