A Maggie Valley native is dancing his way to a national stage after honing his skills in the hills of western North Carolina. David Ferguson got an early start on his dance career, taking his first lessons not long after he learned to walk. David grew up dancing at Angie’s Dance Academy in Clyde, NC. He started when he was 3 years old. his grandfather, Robert Lee Ferguson, put him in dance as a way to expend energy, because he had way too much of it as a 3-year-old. He was named Master Dance or North Carolina in 2003, Mister Dance of North Carolina in 2008 and 1st runner up to Mister Dance of America in 2009. He stuck to it throughout his younger years and, by the time he reached high school, Ferguson realized he wanted to have a go at pursuing a career in dance. He enrolled at the University of North Carolina School of the Arts in Winston-Salem, earning a bachelor of fine arts in contemporary dance, before setting off to study dance overseas for a short time in 2015. “I was in Taiwan for a while, continuing to learn dance there, and then I went to Montreal, Canada. When I was in Montreal, I auditioned for a company based in New York – Helen Simoneau Danse,” Ferguson said. “I didn’t hear back for several weeks, but then one day she called and offered me an apprenticeship. I never thought I would move to New York, it was the farthest thing from my mind, but in August I packed a bag and moved up there, and I’ve been there ever since.” +3 In the three years Ferguson has spent in New York, his dance career has taken off – he’s danced on Broadway, and he’s preparing to take part in the first national tour of the current Broadway iteration of “Fiddler on the Roof.” Getting to perform for Broadway shows, he said, is an experience unlike any other for a dancer who’s spent his entire life working on his art. +3 “Growing up in a small town and having something like Angie’s is amazing. She’s an amazing studio owner and teacher, and her employees are all wonderful,” Ferguson said. “To be able to have that here, and to have that ability to grow in dance here, it was amazing. We did a lot of competitions, and she exposed me to a lot of different dance styles through that. We traveled a lot, and I met a lot of choreographers through them.” Ferguson is leaving for a 10-month tour with “Fiddler on the Roof” at the beginning of October.
“I began dancing at Angie’s Dance Academy at the young age of three. When I first started, it was just an activity that my parent’s had signed me up for but it didn’t take long for me to realize that dancing was my passion. Dancing at Angie’s Dance Academy taught me many things that I still value today. The best lesson I ever learned was to be confident in myself. This is one of the most important things in dance, as well as in life. To be successful, you have to believe that you can accomplish your goals.
Dancing brings you many opportunities. During my time at the studio, I was able to travel to many places and take classes from amazing choreographers. I was able to attend the Radio City Rockette Summer Intensive, twice, and dance on Radio City Music Hall Stage. I had always dreamed of being a Rockette and being able to learn from them was one of the best experiences I have ever had. I am now Co-Captain of East Tennessee State University Dance Team. Dancing at ETSU has made my college experience amazing. I am also a lyrical teacher at a studio in Tennessee, trying to influence my students as I was influenced while taking dance. If it weren’t for my parents and the teachers I had at Angie’s, I wouldn’t be where I am today. I can’t say thank you enough. I have always been taught to reach for the stars, and I will continue reaching everyday. ” -Blake Henderson