If you are going to make a show where celebrities recreate classic music videos, you can’t do much better than Tina Landon as judge.
This is the choreographer who has worked with Prince, Anastacia, Pink, Jay-Z, Marc Anthony, Kristi Yamaguchi, Aerosmith, Jennifer Lopez, Christina Aguilera, Ricky Martin, Janet Jackson, Michael Jackson, Shakira, Pussycat Dolls, Tina Turner, Britney Spears and Rihanna – to name but a few.
So, who is she? The 54-year-old is a Mexican-American who grew up studying ballet, jazz and tap in California, at her mum’s demand. She turned out to have a talent for it, so she headed for Hollywood where she initially became a cheerleader with the Laker Girls.
Michael and Janet Jackson were key figures in Tina’s life, providing her first big breaks. She was booked as principal dancer in Michael’s Smooth Criminal, and then in Janet’s What Have You Done for Me Lately music video. She later went on tour with Janet during her Rhythm Nation Tour as a backing dancer.
But her talents as a choreographer soon shone though and her career took a new direction. She created the moves for Janet’s music video for If, and by 1998 she had earned an Emmy nomination for Outstanding Achievement In Choreography for Janet’s show, the Velvet Rope World Tour.
With the backing of Janet Jackson and an Emmy nomination, Tina was in high demand. She went on to receive an MTV Award for MJ and Janet’s Scream, and another for Ricky Martin’s Livin La Vida Loca, working with some of the biggest pop stars in the world.
In 2009, Tina and several other choreographers reunited with Janet at the MTV Video Music Awards to perform to the song Scream – originally choreographed by Tina herself – as a tribute to Michael after his death.
Tina also comes to Dance Dance Dance with plenty of television experience under her belt. Over in America, she took part in the reality competition Step It Up and Dance, teaching the contestants the routine she created for Rihanna’s music video Umbrella and even serving as a guest judge.
Dance Dance Dance airs at 6.30pm on Sundays on ITV