Charmaine Jordan, La’Donna better known as “Charm La’Donna” is the choreographer you should know in 2022! The Compton choreographer turned rapper is the star behind some of the biggest artists’ choreography including Kendrick Lamar, Chris Brown, Dua Lipa, The Weeknd, and Lil Baby to name a few. The star also choreographed The Weeknd’s Super Bowl Half-Time performances. Having grown under the wings of Fatima Robinson (Michael Jackson and Aaliyah’s choreographer) it is no doubt that she was destined for success from an early age.
For some of us when we see dancers on stage, the urge to dance along and mimic their moves can be more fascinating than the music itself. Genius choreographers like Charm La’Donna have mastered the art of rhythm and attracting the audience through body movement. Young La’Donna was only a 17-year-old senior at Los Angeles County High School for the Arts when she was scouted to be Madonna’s backup dancer on her 2006 Confessions World Tour. During the months Charm spent with Madonna globe-trotting from Japan to Europe and Russia as she gained a master class in translating music to movement.
“From the time I was a kid, everything about me has been interdisciplinary. I don’t have a dance chapter, I don’t have a music chapter. My experiences can be broken down into chapters, but my gifts cannot.”
In 2019, the star choreographer won a Best Choreography MTV VMA for the work she did with Latin artists, Rosalia and J Balvin on their hit song “Con Altura”. Charm credits her success to her mother and grandmother as well as the women of Compton. Charm La’Donna’s calm persona and gracefulness resemble the matriarchy in which she grew up. “If I ain’t got it, sister got it, a cousin got it, auntie says she got me.” One cannot argue the importance of women figures in a girl child’s life, and this is rooted in La’Donna’s life.
THE BIG STEPPERS CHOREOGRAPHY
La’Donna started out as the only woman performer on Kendrick Lamar’s DAMN music tour. Their relationship has since led her to become the head choreographer for the Big Steppers tour. This is where she leads and empowers a group of men and women. Kendrick’s album, Mr Morale & The Big Steppers is arguably one of the best albums to be released in 2022. In the double album, Kendrick depicts himself and those in his world assuming facades as “Big Steppers” to mask the inner trauma that they’re tap dancing around. Some fans have expressed a certain dense complexity in Kendrick’s thought process in this album. However La’Donna mastered the choreography around it.
In an interview with Complex about The Big Steppers Album Tour, Charm La’Donna detailed her process and how she achieved the goal of turning the album narrative into a movement. “I’ve been watching and understanding his body and his movement and adapting it into the world,” she said. “I think that’s why [the show] seems very cohesive for the viewer, it’s an extension of him.” She explains that she watches Kendrick’s body and movements during performances and then infuses his movements into the choreography.
CATCH HER IF YOU CAN
The 32-year-old Choreographer is currently working on some of the biggest tours of 2022. Three of these tours are running at the same time. However there’s star power that comes with being at that level, she’s not new to this! La’Donna has worked with some of the most notable performers of all time. Think Madonna, Britney Spears, Selena Gomez, Pharrell, Anderson.Paak, and Ella Mai. There’s definitely a certain power that comes with being La’Donna!
Her goals are aligned with who she is as a woman in the arts. Apart from being a choreographer and making music, she wants to be a director of film and television, growing herself in every shape and form of the arts. La’Donna is an inspiration to so many women and her career is definitely one to watch as she has emerged as the choreographer to know in 2022.