The Toronto Raptors are searching for the final member of this year’s Raptors Dance Pak, and the team is looking to its fans for the assist. Nicole Nouvion is one of the finalists you can vote for in the “You Pick the Pak” contest presented by Foot Locker.
Nicole recently taught dance in Chatham and Windsor, and has since moved to Toronto. Despite her hectic schedule, Nicole took the time to chat with Raptors Rapture as she awaits the results of the contest.
Raptors Rapture: How did you hear about the Raptors Dance Pak tryouts?
Nicole:I heard about the Raptors Dance Pak tryouts from their Facebook page. I knew before I moved to Toronto that I wanted to audition for the Dance Pak, so I just kept checking the Facebook page regularly until they posted information on it.
RR: Describe your tryout experience and how you felt throughout the process.
Nicole: This audition was probably one of the biggest professional dance auditions I had ever been to. There was somewhere around 250 ladies who were at the audition, including the Dance Pak members from the previous year. Going into the audition I felt very excited! This was my first audition since moving to Toronto so I was excited to meet other girls and show the judges what I could do. I told myself I was just going to have fun with it and not let my nerves get the best of me. Once my turn came to perform in front of the judges and the music came on I just went for it. I knew that if I showed confidence and enjoyed myself then the judges would see that in me. The judges made the first cut and I was ecstatic when I found out that I had made it past the first round! Finally the judges narrowed it down into two groups….The first group consisted of 17 ladies they wanted to place directly on the team while the second group was comprised of 8 contestants who would compete in the “Pick the Pak” contest for the remaining spot.
RR: What was your reaction to finding out you would be one of the finalists for the last spot on the team?
Nicole: When they called my number as one of the eight finalists I couldn’t believe it. Going into the audition I didn’t know I would make it that far, so it was a surprise. I immediately called my family and friends to tell them the news. I still can’t believe that I am a part of this experience. I have never been a part of anything of this magnitude before so it was definitely exciting to be offered this.
RR: What’s been your favourite part about everything you’ve experienced with the Raptors up to this point?
Nicole: My favourite part up until this point has been the actual contest. I’m overwhelmed by the amount of support I’ve received, not only from my family and friends but also my community back home as well as people I have not met before. Seeing people root for me encourages me to work harder to win this contest and make them proud by making the team. However, regardless of the outcome this has been an amazing experience.
RR: You’ve studied several different dance styles, which one is your favourite and why?
Nicole: I really like hip hop and street jazz. I just love dancing to upbeat songs and showing off my energy and personality in that form of dance. They are styles I’m good at and comfortable with. I think at first glance people wouldn’t expect that I would be a hip hop dancer, so surprising them when they see me perform is always fun too!
RR: Have you always wanted to teach dance, and what is your favourite part about being a dance instructor?
Nicole: Ever since I was a little girl I have always idolized my dance teachers and wanted to be one when I grew up. Teaching dance was my first job and has been something I have loved doing for about 10 years now. My favorite part would definitely be building relationships with all of the students and their families as well as watching my dancers improve throughout the years. Seeing students who I taught when they were only 4 or 5 grow into beautiful dancers is a fantastic feeling. To know that I have positively impacted these dancers is a great accomplishment.
Favourite Song To Dance To
“Single Ladies” – Beyonce
Blue and purple
Favourite TV show/Film
Modern Family, How I Met Your Mother, Friends (I love comedies!)
It’s your day off, what are you doing?
On my days off I like to catch up on my sleep a bit. Then I either go workout or take a yoga or dance class. The rest of the day I try spend relaxing or catching up with friends or family.
Hidden Talent is being good at Guitar Hero, what’s your go-to song?
“Hit Me With Your Best Shot” – Pat Benatar
“Paint It Black” – Rolling Stones
You can vote for Nicole until the contest closes on August 18 at 11:59:59 P.M.
Check out her official Raptors profile and video interviews (as well as a mean version of the sprinkler dance) here too.
(All photos courtesy of the Toronto Raptors)