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Wade Robson

Wade Robson
Born Wade Jeremy William Robson
(1982-09-17) 17 September 1982
Brisbane, Australia
Occupation Dancer, Choreographer, Film Director, Producer, Songwriter.
Spouse(s) Amanda Rodriguez (2005-present)[1]

Wade Jeremy William Robson (born 17 September 1982) is an Australian dancer and choreographer. He began performing as a dancer at the age of five. He has directed music videos and world tours for numerous music artists such as NSYNC and Britney Spears. Robson found success not only as a choreographer and tour director but also as the host and executive producer for The Wade Robson Project which aired on MTV in 2003. In 2007, he joined the Fox television dance series So You Think You Can Dance as both a judge and choreographer.


  • Career 1
    • Early career 1.1
    • Professional career 1.2
    • Routines for So You Think You Can Dance 1.3
  • Personal life 2
  • Career credits 3
    • Discography 3.1
    • Videography 3.2
    • Filmography 3.3
    • Television 3.4
  • References 4
  • External links 5


Early career

Robson was in a talent troupe called Johnny Young's Talent School and the group did 14 shows a week, usually at venues like shopping malls. When he was nine, Robson moved to the United States with his mother and sisters. Michael Jackson assisted them in the move and recruited Robson to appear in three music videos: "Black or White," "Jam," and "Heal the World."[2]

At the age of 11 Robson had an agent. Along with friend DeWayne Turrentine, he formed the hip-hop duo Quo and by the end of the year released an album on Jackson's MJJ Music label[3] through Epic/SME Records. The following year, he was teaching dance classes in Hollywood.[2] He formed a troupe of dancing children which performed internationally.[4] He received his first choreography job for the R&B group Immature at 14. The job led to others, for artists such as Britney Spears. Clients were sometimes reluctant to take direction from Robson, a self-described "skinny little white kid".[2] When Spears first interviewed Robson to choreograph her tour, she exclaimed, "He's a friggin' baby!"; she had expected him to be in his 30s or 40s.[3]

During the late 1990s, while still a teenager, Robson choreographed Spears's Pepsi commercials including one which aired during the 2001 Super Bowl. He choreographed the performance by NSYNC and Spears at the 1999 Video Music Awards and he co-directed Spears's 1999-2000 world tours as well as NSYNC's 2000 No Strings Attached Tour. In 2001, he choreographed Spears' I'm a Slave 4 U video and was choreographer and director of NSYNC's 2001 "PopOdyssey Tour". In the NSYNC music video "Pop", Robson had to fill in for NSYNC member Joey Fatone during several of the dance sequences because of an injury that Fatone sustained at an NSYNC concert the night before the video shoot. That same year, he directed Spears' Dream Within a Dream Tour.

Professional career

Robson was the creator and host of MTV's The Wade Robson Project, a talent search competition for hip-hop dancers.[5] The program was sponsored by Juice Batteries.[6]

In 2002, Robson was named one of Dance Magazine's "25 to Watch".

Dance clothing company Power T Dance developed a line of name-brand consumer dance shoes with Robson. The shoes were distributed in the U.S. through the Ralph Libonati Co.[7]

Robson appeared as himself in the 2004 urban dance film You Got Served, which won "Best Dance Sequence (Feature Film)" at the 2004 American Choreography Awards.[8]

Robson has joined several other choreographers such as Mia Michaels and Shane Sparks on the PULSE Tour, a series of nationwide weekend workshops designed to give dancers the chance to train under top choreographers.[9]

Dancers from So You Think You Can Dance (Season 2) performing the Zombie dance or the "Ramalama (Bang Bang)" which won Wade his first Emmy in 2007.

In 2007, Robson began choreographing the American Idols LIVE! Tour. He has also choreographed both group and partner pieces for the second and third seasons of So You Think You Can Dance.

In September 2007, Robson was awarded a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Choreography for the dance number "Ramalama (Bang Bang)" on (Season 2) of So You Think You Can Dance.[10] The choreography continues to be one of the show's most memorable and favorite group performances to date.

Robson was awarded his second Primetime Emmy Award the following year in 2008 on Season 3 of So You Think You Can Dance for the jazz routine "Humming Bird and the Flower". The performance was lauded by the show's executive producer Nigel Lythgoe calling it "absolutely genius, brilliant, and one of those routines that we will remember on this series for a very long time."[11]

In 2008, Cirque de Soleil hired Robson to choreograph "Believe", starring illusionist and magician, Criss Angel. It debuted to rave reviews at the Luxor Hotel.

Robson and NSYNC's Justin Timberlake partnered in 2001, co-writing the hit singles "Pop", "Gone", and "See Right Through You" on NSYNC's final album Celebrity. Robson had initially written "Celebrity" for his own album, but was persuaded to let NSYNC record it instead. They also co-wrote Britney Spears' "What It's Like To Be Me", on which Timberlake sang back up vocals. The song's copyright is held jointly by Robson and Timberlake's respective companies, WaJeRo Sound and Tennman Tunes.

Robson co-wrote the song "Movin' On" for the Backstreet Boys' album Never Gone with Backstreet member Howie Dorough. The song was released as a bonus track.

Robson has also written songs for the singing groups Dream and Youngstown. He also remixed two of Mandy Moore's songs from her album I Wanna Be with You.

Robson choreographed the animated feature film Happy Feet Two, which was released in 2011. He was originally set to direct Step Up Revolution, (released in 2012), but dropped out of the project for personal reasons. He was replaced by Scott Speer.[12]

In 2011, Wade was hired to direct his first theatrical motion picture "Step Up 4".

In 2012, Robson was the creative director for Demi Lovato's "Summer Tour 2012".

Routines for So You Think You Can Dance

Season Week Dancers Dance style Music Routine title Notes
2 6 Top 10 Group routine "Ramalama (Bang Bang)"—Róisín Murphy Ramalama Emmy Award for Outstanding Choreography 2007
8 Heidi Groskreutz
Travis Wall
Afro-Pop "W'Happy Mama"—Zap Mama W'Happy Mama
9 Top 4 Group routine "SexyBack"—Justin Timberlake SexyBack
3 1 Sara Von Gillern
Jesús Solorio
Pop-Jazz "Cabaret Hoover" from Les Triplettes de Belleville Vagabond Cabaret Chosen as Tony Meredith's favourite routine of the season
Top 20 Group routine "Put Your Hands Where My Eyes Could See"—Busta Rhymes Busta Mod
3 Jaimie Goodwin
Hokuto "Hok" Konishi
Jazz "The Chairman's Waltz" from Memoirs of a Geisha The Hummingbird and the Flower Emmy Award for Outstanding Choreography 2008
Chosen as Nigel Lythgoe's favourite routine of the season
4 Lauren Gottlieb
Neil Haskell
Jazz "Night of the Dancing Flame"—Róisín Murphy Good VS Evil
6 Top 10 Individual solos "Waiting on the World to Change"—John Mayer Peace
8 Top 6 Group routine "2:19"—Tom Waits Swamp
9 Sabra Johnson
Lacey Schwimmer
Jazz "Koyal (Songbird)"—Nitin Sawhney Foxes
4 1 Top 20 Group routine "Cobrastyle"—Robyn Cobrastyle
9 Katee Shean
Joshua Allen
Lyrical Jazz "Slow Dancing in a Burning Room"—John Mayer Slow Dancing in a Burning Room
Cirque du Soleil Guest performance "Homage to the Rabbits"—Éric Serra Homage to the Rabbits
5 1 Ashley Valerio
Kūpono Aweau
Jazz "Felt Mountain"—Goldfrapp Crash Test Dummies
5 Janette Manrara
Brandon Bryant
Jazz "Ruby Blue"—Róisín Murphy Ruby Blue
6 Top 10 Jazz "So Much Betta"—Janet Jackson So Much Betta
9 Top 4 Pop-jazz "Boys Boys Boys"—Lady Gaga Boys Boys Boys
6 1 Top 20 Jazz "Comanche"—The Revels Comanche
2 Pauline Mata
Peter Sabasino
Jazz "George Baker Selection Little Green Bag
4 Top 14 Group Routine "Aha!"—Imogen Heap Aha!
7 1 Top 11 + All Stars Group Routine " Fame "— David Bowie Fame

Personal life

In August 2005 Robson married Amanda Rodriguez, a former fashion designer and creative directing partner on So You Think You Can Dance.[13] The couple have a son, Koa, and live in Maui, Hawaii.[14]

On Michael Jackson's death: "His music, his movement, his personal words of inspiration and encouragement and his unconditional love will live inside of me forever."

Robson, June 2009[15]

Robson and his family testified as witnesses for the defense during Michael Jackson's 2005 child molestation trial staunchly supporting the singer and denying allegations of wrongdoing.[16] Following Jackson's death in 2009, Robson stated: "His music, his movement, his personal words of inspiration and encouragement and his unconditional love will live inside of me forever." In 2013, however, Robson alleged that Jackson had sexually abused him as a child. He has since filed a lawsuit against Jackson's estate, which is currently pending.[17] In a recent Facebook posting, Robson wrote, "It was not the plan for this info to be made public, but now that it has, I am sharing it because it is important for these 'uncomfortable' topics to be talked about...Silence perpetuates abuse."

A molestation lawsuit filed against the Michael Jackson estate by choreographer Wade Robson was dismissed May 26, 2015 by a Los Angeles judge who ruled that Robson waited too long to seek legal action. Robson, who previously testified under oath that Jackson never molested him during the singer's criminal trial in 2005, later sued the Jackson estate in May 2013, claiming Jackson molested him during a seven-year stretch that began in 1990 when Robson was seven. The Jackson estate had denied Robson's allegations. Superior Court Judge Mitchell Beckloff wrote in his decision that Robson could file a lawsuit "only for a reasonable time period after any violence, intimidation or threatening conduct by the decedent ceases." The alleged molestation occurred between 1990 and 1997; Robson waited 16 years before taking legal action. In those 16 years, Robson was one of Jackson's staunchest supporters when the singer faced criminal molestation charges, even when other trial witnesses testified that they saw Jackson molest Robson.[18]

"Mr. Robson testified under oath in a courtroom that Michael never did anything improper with him," Attorney Howard Weitzman, who represents Jackson's estate, told My News LA. "The estate believes his testimony was honest when his sole motivation was 'to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.'"[19]

Career credits


  • 1994: Quo
  • 2006: Wade Robson's Project: Dance Beats Vol. 1


  • Michael Jackson's "Black or White" (1991) Music video — dancer (uncredited)
  • Michael Jackson's Dangerous: The Short Films (1993) (V) — dancer ("Jam"/"Black or White")
  • Britney Spears' "Born to Make You Happy" (1999) — choreographer
  • A*Teens' Upside Down, choreographer (2000/2001)
  • Britney Spears' "Oops... I Did It Again" (2000) — choreographer
  • Britney Spears' "I'm A Slave 4 U" (2001) — choreographer
  • Britney Spears' "Overprotected" (Worldwide Version) (2001) — choreographer
  • NSync's "Pop" (2001) — choreographer & dancer



  • Full House, "Come Fly with Me" (1992) — Terry, traveling choir member
  • Picket Fences, "Elective Conduct" (1994) — T.J.
  • Nothing Sacred, "House of Rage" (1997) — Garner Cole
  • Pacific Blue, "Users" (1998) — Brandon Jeter
  • Will & Grace, "A.I.: Artificial Insemination" (2002) — Backup Dancer for Cher (uncredited)
  • So You Think You Can Dance, U.S. TV series (2006-?) — Himself


  1. ^ Maria, Santa (14 June 2005). "Aussies bolster Jackson's defence case". Melbourne:  
  2. ^ a b c Roth, Kristin (14 September 2000), "Wade Robson" Rolling Stone (849):120
  3. ^ a b Chiu, Alexis (22 September 2003). "Flash Dancer". People. 60 (12):173-174
  4. ^ Margot Dougherty (August 2004). "Dancer-Choreographer-Re mixer-Director Kevin Tancharoen Is Still Evolving".  
  5. ^ Isabel C. Gonzalez (9 February 2004). "Inspired by hip-hop traditions, dance battles are catching on at nightclubs".  
  6. ^ Linnett, Richard; Halliday, Jean; Stanley, T.L. (6 October 2003), "Adages". Advertising Age. 74 (40):44
  7. ^ Newman, Melinda (31 January 2004), "The Darkness Creeps Into The Limelight". Billboard. 116 (5):16
  8. ^ LA Times
  9. ^ No byline (November 2006), "PULSING with WADE ROBSON". Dance Magazine. 80 (11):16
  10. ^ "Primetime Awards" Retrieved 31 August 2007
  11. ^ So You Think You Can Dance, 27 June 2007
  12. ^ "‘Step Up 4’ Lands Director Scott Speer". Retrieved July 22, 2015. 
  13. ^
  14. ^
  15. ^ (27 June 2009) "Jackson's Australian confidant speaks out". (accessed 2009-06-29)
  16. ^ Martin Kasindorf (6 May 2005). "Former houseguests take stand in Jackson's defense".  
  17. ^ Sisario, Ben (14 May 2013). "Negligence Is Debated in Jackson Death Case".  
  18. ^
  19. ^

External links

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