TWO-TIME NAACP WINNER!
An international performer and creative with over twenty five years experience in hip hop, street and freestyle dance culture, Mr. Rapier’s desire is to connect others to the powerful spirit behind dance that grabbed his heart years ago. For him, art changes the atmosphere. A painter’s choice of colors affects the words of a poet, which in turn inspires the steps of a dancer who hears the rhythm between each phrase. Mr. Rapier is driven to weave diverse art forms together into dynamic productions that inspire, motivate and increase awareness of the larger groove that surrounds all our lives. He draws from extensive experience in all mediums; from L.A.’s commercial world to New York’s Broadway stage.
As founder and visionary for the award winning group, The Groovaloos, Mr. Rapier has directly influenced dance in film and television for over a decade. His creative direction has led to guest appearances on Dancing With The Stars, So You Think You Can Dance, Ellen Degeneres, Jimmy Fallon, Wayne Brady and grand championship performances on NBC’s Superstars of Dance (Superstars was described as one the greatest spectacles of dance performance ever seen on television). Mr. Rapier is co-creator, director of choreography, and a producer for GROOVALOO. With over two hundred performances to date, the Off Broadway and touring production was touted “Cirque du Soleil of the Street” and honored with a World Dance Award inspiring audiences of all walks of life to celebrate passion and purpose. He has choreographed multiple performances for the World Choreography Awards, and Mr. Rapier was a contributing choreographer for SuperCr3w and their World Of Dance and ABDC television performances. He also directed the high profile event An Unprecedented Night of Dance at The Saban Theatre in Beverly Hills. The exhilarating gala brought out celebrities such as Gwen Stefani, Nigel Lythgoe, and Taboo, along with the who’s who of the dance community and raised over $100,000 for an injured member of The Groovaloos. Featured performers included Wayne Brady, tWitch, Anjelah Johnson, Affion Crockett, The JabbaWockeez, BeatFreaks, The LXD, and iLuminate.
In theatre Mr. Rapier is an Ovation Award and two-time NAACP Award winner for Best Musical Choreography. His love of storytelling has resonated throughout his work with Tony Award winning directors including; Once on This Island for Tommy Kail (director of Hamilton), Motown the Musical (workshops & labs) for director Charles Randolph-Wright, and Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots for Des McAnuff (director of Jersey Boys). Mr. Rapier’s choreography on Yoshimi was nominated for a Craig Noel Award, and his unique style appeared on Broadway as associate choreographer of Jesus Christ Superstar, once again collaborating with renowned director Des McAnuff.
As a dancer Mr. Rapier has performed in films from LaLaLand toThe Goofy Movie, with artists from Diana Ross to Queen Latifah, from SuperBowl Halftime Spectaculars to the Image Awards, and for countless corporate industrials. He has taught masterclasses and adjudicated events across North America, in South America, The West Indies, Japan, and South Korea, including Hip Hop International, workshops for the cast of Cirque du Soleil’s Michael Jackson One, and as an Ambassador of Dance and Host for Comcast’s On Demand TV Network.
A dynamic speaker, Mr. Rapier shares powerful messages from his extensive life experience and thought provoking insight from freestyle dance culture. Reflected in his central phrase, “It’s Not the Move, It’s the Groove”, he leads audiences to new levels of freedom and authenticity. Mr. Rapier has appeared on numerous panels and has been a guest speaker at The University of Southern California and The Kaufman School of Dance where he also gave lectures on Street Dance: History & Culture, Choreography & Performance, and taught Urban Dance forms for six years as part of the Adjunct faculty.
Throughout his endeavors, Mr. Rapier has remained deeply rooted in his community as a life coach and mentor. He has a unique ability to draw out people’s abilities and guide them toward higher creativity and originality in art and in life. His infamous Groove Night program and other bold outreach methods were pivotal in establishing a central hub for dancers in Los Angeles when there was none to be found. As such, Mr. Rapier has been a launching pad for countless individuals and continues to provide support and key platforms for numerous members of today’s top influential dancers and dance groups.
A Canadian native, Mr. Rapier grew up surrounded by country and rock ’n roll, but it was his father’s love of jazz music and weekend dance jams at home with his mother and older sister that sparked the groove within him. An athlete and academic, Mr. Rapier was on a medical career path like his father, but that all changed with he became a founding member of Streetscape, a pioneering dance troupe responsible for bringing popping and boogaloo to Canada. After winning the Canadian Talent Search and taking top honors at the International IMTA Awards in Los Angeles and New York, he relocated to the United States. He is a member of The Society of Directors & Choreographers, SAG/AFTRA, and The Television Academy Choreographers Peer Group. For the past four years he has been Artistic Director for Cantinas Arts, a non-profit faith based foundation determined to use their art forms to ignite and inspire a generation. Mr. Rapier lives in Los Angeles, happily married and has three beautiful children.
Mr. Animation Legacy Award presented by Jacob Jonas Company
San Diego Theatre Critics Circle for Outstanding Choreography Nominee - Yoshimi Battles the Pink Robots, La Jolla Playhouse
World Dance Award Winner: Outstanding Choreography Concert/Live Performance - The Groovaloos
NAACP Winner Best Choreography - Once On This Island
NBC’s Superstars of Dance Grand Champions - The Groovaloos
NAACP Winner Best Choreography - City Kid: The Musical
Ovation Award Winner Best Choreography - City Kid: The Musical
Hip Hop Dance Award Winner - Choreography in Film or Commercial
American Choreography Award Nominee - Skechers Commerical
American Street Dance Competition 1st Place Winner - The Groovaloos