charles riley aka Lil BUCK
Lil Buck moved to Los Angeles when he was 19 to pursue a career in dance. In 2010, he co-choreographed and danced in the music video for the song "Tightrope" by Janelle Monáe. He also appeared on The Ellen DeGeneres Show. In 2011, director and former ballet dancer Damian Woetzel met Lil Buck and paired him with Yo-Yo Ma in "The Dying Swan" performance that went viral on YouTube. Woetzel heard about Lil Buck from his wife Heather Watts who saw an old YouTube video clip of Lil Buck freestyle dancing to Camille Saint-Saëns’ Le cygne (The Swan). She showed the clip to her husband Woetzel who then showed the clip to Yo-Yo Ma. They all eventually met by using Facebook to contact Lil Buck's ballet teacher Katie Smythe. "Lil Buck is what you might get if Mikhail Baryshnikov and Chris Brown's genes were combined in a blender."Ole Schell, filmmaker After "The Dying Swan" performance, Woetzel's professional relationship with Lil Buck continued. He paired Lil Buck with Yo-Yo Ma again for a performance at the 2011 U.S.-China Forum on the Arts and Culture in Beijing. Lil Buck's trip was documented in a short independent film titled Lil Buck Goes to China. The film was directed by Ole Schell who is the son of Orville Schell, a American journalist based in China who organized the forum in Beijing. Woetzel also invited Lil Buck to be the artist in residence at the 2011 Vail International Dance Festival. Aside from working with Woetzel and Yo-Yo Ma, Lil Buck danced for Madonna during her Super Bowl XLVI halftime show after winning the "Dance for Madonna Smirnoff Nightlife Exchange Competition". Later that year, he joined her MDNA Tour as one of 22 dancers. In 2012, Lil Buck was named one of Dance Magazine's "25 to Watch". The same year, he appeared in a national GAP ad and two NOWNESS videos, one of which was directed by ballet choreographer Benjamin Millepied. The other video was directed by Jacob Sutton who submitted a longer version to Cinedans, a Dutch film festival that showcases films based on dance. In 2013, Lil Buck performed on The Colbert Report. He performed with Yo-Yo Ma a third time at an event directed by Woetzel and held at (Le) Poisson Rouge in New York City. Lil Buck and his cousin Ron "Prime Tyme" Myles won a Bessie Award for this performance. Later in the year, he made the August 2013 cover of Dance magazine and briefly appeared in the Spike Jonze film Her as a busker. He is currently dancing in the Cirque du Soleil show Michael Jackson: One.