Show Must Go On

Posted in Chippendales, confidence, insecurities on April 23rd, 2014 by sexsinthecity

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Insecurities…we all have them!  By now most of us have found a way to either hide or tuck them away and no one really knows our self-doubts unless you tell them.  To be real, no one is perfect and we all have imperfections or things we aren’t happy with on a regular basis.   But what do you do when you feel your flaws are exposed to the whole world?  I’m talking about those sudden things that pop-up without warning and slap you right dead in the face….back in the day, wasn’t it always the case right before yearbook pictures that you would get that big zit in the middle of your forehead!

My good buddy Matt Marshall went through this a few months back on tour. We were in Germany and he had a terrible toothache. Something had to be done immediately.  Luckily he was able to find a dentist nearby and he returned to the show before the Novocaine had worn off.  He couldn’t feel his face and his smile looked like the Joker. We all laughed at his pain…well never again will I laugh at someone who has to go on stage when they feel like that!

A similar situation happened to me this past week before leaving on tour.  I got something in my eye and it swelled up the size of a golf ball! Do you remember the scene from the movie Hitch with Will Smith?  The part where he had an allergic reaction and his face swelled up like he had gotten stung by a bee!? That’s what I felt like!  No big deal right? Wrong!  I looked like Quasimodo and I’m supposed to go on stage and act cool and sexy?!   I should have been locked in the tower never to be seen again.

My stomach was turning and my palms were sweating. I couldn’t go on stage like this and I couldn’t not do the show!  So I had to think quickly on my feet. Gucci shades to the rescue…I would wear glasses or hats and act like it is part of the act; my hip-hop, I’m too cool for school look. So now instead of Will Smith, I’m channeling Flo Rida and no one will ever know the difference!  The show starts and I make my first appearance.  The girls are screaming…Not in horror as I thought, but because they were having a good time. I made it work for me and turned my insecurity into something positive.

It’s never really as bad as we think and I learned a valuable lesson that night! Has life thrown you a curve ball before a big event?  Tell us your solutions and how you made it through!

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Say Cheese

Posted in Chippendales, Selfies on April 4th, 2014 by sexsinthecity

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Selfies! To post or not to post? That is the question! We all have them…That friend on Facebook or Instagram who has filled your timeline with updates every five minutes, but what’s even worse are those daily selfies!

Being a Chippendales performer, I’ve had to learn over the years that my friends don’t want to see yet another shirtless picture of me on their wall everyday (although some of the ladies might disagree!). So recently I had to have a Facebook intervention with one of my good friends! The stuff I was seeing made me cringe! Friends don’t let friends post bad photos and thank goodness for the delete button!

We’ve all been there…you know the picture you took at 2am at the club that you thought was so hot!  Only to wake up the next day in horror when you realize that you actually let the whole world see you out wasted and making bad decisions!

The big question arises, do we like selfies or are they to be banished with MySpace never to be looked at again?  Well the answer is yes! But there are a few rules one should follow before making these vital decisions in life:

1-Make sure it’s a good photo of you and the lighting is right: A dim club bathroom is probably a no.

2-We don’t mind seeing your progress in the gym, but go easy on the updates: Show us improvements in your body, but remember being vain is a totally different story.

3-Selfies don’t necessarily have to be just you: They are even better when you have someone else in the picture…no cheating and getting someone to take it!

4-Pick and choose your battles:  Don’t be annoying and post every little thing all the time.  It makes the great ones not as special!

5-Have fun:  Selfies are not supposed to be taken so seriously and if you’ve spent an hour getting ready for your selfie you’ve lost the point. They should be spontaneous!

Ladies, What do you think about selfies?  Overall amusing or just a bore?

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Goodbye Miami

Posted in Chippendales, Miami, traveling on March 24th, 2014 by sexsinthecity

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Well, it certainly has been an exciting ride….It was just three months ago that the Chippendales set up shop in Miami, Florida. We didn’t know what to expect, but we knew the Miami crowd would be a tough one. In a city known for its beauty and lack of clothing everywhere, could we make an impression? Would they enjoy our Vegas style show? Would we be able to bring the heat?

I’m proud to say we did just that, we brought it! In fact we brought it so much that we were asked to come back and extend our stay. The second time around was even better than the first…Adding even more fire to something that was already blazing. With a new number and new cast members, the show kept getting better week after week. The people we met here have been nothing but kind to us and really rolled out the red carpet. To be honest, it’s a miracle we survived after performing and partying in one of the hottest nightclubs Miami has to offer! If you thought Vegas people knew how to party, you ain’t seen nothing til you have partied at the after hours hot spot here called Space. Yikes! That place is for true professional party-ers.

So now it’s time to leave our little vacation here and get back on the road again! Back to living out of our suitcases for the next few months. Time to tour the US. But wait I’ve got a great idea, let’s go set up shop in another city! Which city should we come and stay in for a few months? Suggestions?

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Reinvent Yourself

Posted in change, Chippendales, haircut, Miami on February 28th, 2014 by sexsinthecity

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Change is good, inevitable and sometimes hard. Being with Chippendales now for nearly 12 years, I’ve seen my fair share of change. Some people embrace it, while some struggle.  I was inspired to write about change because something happened this week that made me take a step back and look at all the changes that have been happening in our Chippendales world.

I was scrolling through my Facebook feed one evening and noticed a picture of one of the dancers, Joshua DeBouis. His normal head full of dreadlocks was now gone! I thought, this is either a very old picture or one of those picture apps that lets you edit and photo shop your pics. I immediately picked up the phone to call him and see if this was real. Sure enough it was. The dreadlocks were gone forever, fifteen years in the making, now gone. Something that had been part of him for so long, something that helped to define him at times was now a thing of the past.

Now there are some that take life and its challenges and stay ahead of the pack; current and fresh. A good example is when we are making changes to the show.   We’ve been working very hard the last few months, especially since coming to Miami to update the show.  I made a music change and took out the song “Get your freak on” by Missy Elliot and replaced it with “Light Em Up” by Fall Out Boy. Someone asked me why we replaced it and I said because that song was popular in 2001 and it’s 2014! Don’t get me wrong it’s a great song, but sometimes we need to let ourselves evolve and not get so stuck in the past. Embrace change!

All these things got me on a kick of allowing myself to be more open to new and exciting things and not being the one left in 2001!  For me it was my wardrobe. Anyone who knows me knows I can be very over the top! The bigger, flashier and shinier the better, but my buddy brought something to my attention that I actually embraced.  When Jaymes Vaughan came to Miami for our opening and saw some of the shirts I was still wearing, he had to give me an intervention. He took the black vest out of my spot, the one with silver studded collar and rhinestone  ”B” on the back….threw it right on the floor and said this is out!  I fell over in laughter!  No one wears this stuff anymore; it’s very Vegas 1990s (I love the 90s)!  He was right, I needed to step back. The same hair style that I’ve had for 20 years could probably use an update or at the very least try a new style. Trying new things can be scary, but sometimes necessary for your soul!

We also recently lost two of our best performers. They decided it was time to make some changes in their lives and spread their wings.  Chaun Thomas and Juan DeAngelo; two seasoned performers made their final performance on the Chippendales stage.   They have been with the company for nearly ten years, giving us the very best they had and will be missed very much!!  These two gentlemen are class acts when on stage and a pleasure to work with. Throughout the years we all have become more than good friends, we have become a family!   I will say this though, it’s never goodbye….Just see you later. I remember the first time I left Chippendales.  I thought wow; this is the last time I’ll be dancing in Chippendales (I’ve said this twice now).

What is it about being on a the Chippendales stage that people miss so much when they leave it? What draws them back?  Having two of my buddies return this season has been amazing. We welcomed back Staceyy Robinson and Luis Delatorra! I think it has a lot to do with the fans that keep us coming back for more. The way you feel when you put on those cuffs and collars is a feeling that’s hard to describe!  So as we welcome new faces and say “see you later” to our friends, remember reinventing yourself is good and necessary. If it doesn’t work, guess what, you can always make changes!

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The perfect man for the job….

Posted in auditions, Chippendales, inspiration, las vegas, Magic Mike, Miami on February 10th, 2014 by sexsinthecity

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I always hear ladies say a good man is hard to find. Well for the first time I think I understand what they mean. We’ve been on the hunt for some new guys for our elite group of 24 and I have to say it has been quite a challenge. Not because the guys haven’t been showing up to auditions or sending in their applications, but because there is something quite unique about being a Chippendales performer.

People ask me all the time…What does it take to become one of the Chippendales? So, here are a few tips for any guy planning on trying out for us; lets call it the do’s and don’ts of auditions:

1. Make sure you are right for the role. If the requirements state that we are looking for guys that are 6′ tall and in shape and you are clearly nowhere near that height and the only six-pack you have seen lately is made by Budweiser, then this is probably not your best job option.

2. Don’t be a flake. This means don’t show up late or even worse, you don’t even bother to show up after you’ve submitted pictures and had an audition set up and then expect to be seen at a later date. At the very least if something comes up you should call and let someone know what’s going on.  This is common sense.

3. Show personality. What sets you apart from everyone else? Why would someone want to watch you on stage? Even if you don’t get the dance down right away or if you mess up, continue to smile.  Let us see that under pressure you can still keep going. Things happen on stage all the time and you must be prepared for anything.

4. Do your homework. Nowadays there are so many ways for you to see exactly what you’re signing up for and the process to get there. Do some research about the thing you are wanting to do.  Follow your drive and really take a hands on approach.

5. Have a good attitude. I can’t tell you how many times people have been passed over because their attitude sucked! You’ve got a great body and you picked up the moves,   but you were stuck up and acted better than everyone else. No one wants to work with someone like this. It’s better to have a great attitude and need a little work, than a douche bag that can not be critiqued.

Being good on stage is not the only requirement to being a Chippendales performer. That’s only the first part. One of the best parts of our job is the socialization. You have to be able to talk to the ladies, speak well on camera and be prepared to be in the spotlight. We do multiple media interviews all the time. Can you handle that? If you think you’ve got what it takes to be one of the next Chippendales, then it may be time for you to audition. Ladies, do you know anyone that has star quality?  Send them our way and you could have helped us discover the next Channing Tatum.

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Where Them Girls At

Posted in Chippendales, Ian Ziering, Miami, tour on January 29th, 2014 by sexsinthecity

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Oh, What A Night we had (many nights actually) in Miami!  It was hard work and when I say work, I am talking about hanging out at the beach promoting the show and partying in the hottest nightclubs Miami has to offer!  As I walked out of the door with my roommate to go to the beach to meet up with the other guys, we joked about how terrible our job is. We of course were kidding, what did we have to complain about-heck we are in Miami!

There were promotions, TV/radio interviews, and rehearsals for the new numbers.  Plus getting to the gym every day to be on point for you all! Yes, the life of us Chippendales can be very busy, but to see the ladies’ reaction every night and to hear screams of satisfaction is more than thrilling.

Our Miami run was certainly a success and the town was buzzing about the new boys that had just arrived! It was great to have our celebrity friend, Beverly Hills 90210 star, Ian Ziering, kick off the start of the show.  The crowd went wild when he walked through the curtain! And we can’t forget that one of the local stars from Real House Wives of Miami joined us and even made an appearance on stage in one of the numbers!

The slight changes added to the show only made killer numbers even hotter! With new song additions “Where Them Girls At,” “Talk Dirty To Me,” “My Songs Know What You Did In The Dark” and “On The Floor,” the women in Miami can’t wait for more! Stay tuned for details on when we’ll be back.  We love you Miami!

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Until Next Year

Posted in Chippendales, family, prank, tour on January 7th, 2014 by sexsinthecity

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Hard to believe that it’s been nearly four months since the start of the European tour! When we did the first show in Ireland, I thought I was gonna have a panic attack! The show was nowhere near what I wanted it to be! So many mishaps… from guys missing cues to guys forgetting to put their underwear on! With a lot of the veterans gone and a whole new class of rookies, would the show ever be as good as it’s been before?! Well I’m proud to say that not only did we pull it off, but I believe it has been one of the best tours yet!  That’s not to say that the past tours haven’t been great, they have for sure! However, there is something to say for starting from basically scratch with so many new guys.

The fans have been so supportive and embraced the new faces while still loving the ones they have grown to love over the years. As I think back, the strangest part is that nothing will ever be the same moving forward!  We all left the airplane and went our separate ways – some of the faces we saw every single day, we might not ever see again.  But that’s part of life, part of this industry, part of meeting so many different types of people.   People move on, life goes on, and people change. That’s why it’s so important to embrace every opportunity we are given.  That way at the end of the day there are no regrets, no “I wish I would have” or “I should have.”

The last show was the best show we’ve done! It was so fun, the crew decided to play a few tricks on us. We could tell that weeks of planning went into their trickery. It started off with Kris’s underwear being switched out for hot pink Chippendales underwear that they sell at the merchandise booth. This is the part where the girl dresses him on stage, so he had no choice but to put them on. It was fantastic! In construction the tank tops had personal messages on them about each of the guys, but the best was the halter top that one of the guys had to wear. We move on to the Vampire number where Vanya is the lead, when he comes out of his coffin there is supposed to be a girl chained to the set. Well instead of a girl, it was our 6’8″ catering guy dressed in a wig and a maid costume! The look on Vanya’s face was pure horror.

Then during our crowd run the music stops and goes into YMCA and on stage appears our crew dressed as the Village People leading the whole crowd in the dance!  Everyone was on their feet and the cast was dying laughing. My favorite was during the band playing, there was a pizza delivered to me from the crew…everyone knows I love pizza and it makes me happy when on tour.

The tricks rounded out with Matt getting in his bathtub for his number and there was a huge live crab in the tub! He handled it like a pro…picked it up and covered his naked body with it; the whole building erupting in cheers and laughter. There’s so much more to share, but I can’t tell you everything! What I can tell you is that we have enjoyed our journey. Thank you all for your love and support! Here’s to 2014!

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That Kind Of Week….

Posted in accidents, backstage, Chippendales, tour, traveling on December 13th, 2013 by sexsinthecity

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Billy called it…This is gonna be a rough week! Being a ten-year veteran, he has grown to have a keen sense of how things work. This week has definitely felt like one of those “Charlie Brown” episodes, you know, where the cloud of rain follows him around all the time? Or when he tries to kick the football and Lucy pulls it away and he goes tumbling to the ground? Yep! That about sums up our week here on tour!

It started with Cody getting sick and having to go to the hospital in the middle of the show, because he felt like he was going to pass out. We had to do a mid-show reblock. I was thrown into one of the numbers that I actually taught a year ago, but had no clue what I was doing.  Hope no one was video taping! We also had to cut Cody’s big number.  There was no way to throw in his swing five minutes before without having a rehearsal. Thankfully everything was fine and he was back in action the next day.

However, a few days later I would do something on stage and almost die!  There is a move where Matt flips me in the air.  My footing was wrong, so I launched incorrectly and mid-flip knew I wasn’t gonna make it over.  I switched gears to turn straight up and almost landed on my neck! One of the scariest things ever…It was so scary I’ve decided not to do that flip for a while until we can refuel with plenty of rest. Thankfully I wasn’t hurt.

The following day, one of our crew members wasn’t as fortunate.  One of the guys is supposed to enter from the back of the house and run through the audience to meet me on stage. For some reason the door was locked and he couldn’t get in. There I am on stage waiting for him and looking at the audience like, hi…there is something supposed to be happening here besides me just standing around. So after a while of me looking at the audience and wondering what I should do next, I started doing push ups. The audience loved it for some reason and erupted in applause. Meanwhile the trapped cast member bolts backstage hoping to enter through the curtain.  Running at full speed, he plows into one of our techs and knocks him out cold. There was blood everywhere and cuts on his forehead.  The tech doesn’t even know what hit him or what has just happened.  He heads to the hospital. We were all a wreck hoping he was going to be okay, but the show must go on. He arrived a few hours later okay and with a few stitches in his head.

As if things weren’t already crazy, earlier in the week the crew bus had broken down and they were forced to take the cast bus in order to get to the next city on time to set the stage up. So at 7:00 am when the cast met in the lobby to get on our bus, it wasn’t there. We were told we were waiting for another bus to take us on our seven hour ride to the next city. So after waiting another hour and a half our substitute bus arrives. Now let me tell you about the cast bus. It’s pretty amazing, it is a double-decker bus, bunks upstairs for us to sleep, two lounges and a kitchen.  Most times we hop on the bus and go to our bunks to get some more sleep. Well that wasn’t going to happen because when the sub bus arrived it was a regular bus. Imagine ten guys 6 foot and over lying out across the isles trying to get some sleep! We finally make it to the venue and there is no Internet.

At this point in the day, my attitude pretty much sucked! Yep I said it…I was having a crappy day along with everyone else! I thought I was about to lose it. I just want to see my family and I want a big pizza (pizza always makes me happy on tour). But you want to know the great thing about Charlie Brown? He is surrounded by the peanut gallery! That’s his group of friends that are always by his side! His sidekick Snoopy is there to help him make it out of his crappy day and that’s exactly what happened this week. During all this madness, we pulled together as a family and were there for each other. My buddy Billy has the task of introducing me before my solo, well his speech changed that night. It went something like this… Ladies every year we try to bring you a new level of entertainment and this year is no different, so coming up next is our singer, the voice of Las Vegas, and ladies he needs you tonight… Or a salami pizza, give it up for my friend Mr. BC Cheatham! I came out and I was cracking up so much I could hardly start the song.  I’m laughing and the crowd is laughing at me trying to keep my composure.  It was perfect!

You know sometimes in life you have to laugh to keep from crying and laughter truly is the best medicine! So hats off to the cast and crew for making it through hell week! Thank goodness that’s over and now it’s time to move forward, preparing for our next adventure.  Rehearsals start today for our Miami show…That’s right we are adding new numbers and music for our gig in Miami and beware since rehearsals are always interesting. Wish us luck!

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Happy Turkey Day

Posted in Chippendales, Europe, family, Holidays, Thanksgiving, tour on November 26th, 2013 by sexsinthecity

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Really this is my life right now? It’s like being a rock star and a total dream come true for some. So life is great all the time, right? Not all the time. I mean yes, you live out of a suitcase for four months and sleep on a tour bus most nights when not booked in a hotel. But that’s not the bad part, that’s actually kind of exciting.

The part you don’t realize is missing family and being away from home.  This week is especially hard because of Thanksgiving and it will be my third year on the road for this holiday. I’m not saying this for you to feel sorry for me since I get to be with my extended family; the cast and crew!  While we sometimes argue like a real family, at the end of the day we would do anything for each other.

So for that I am thankful. I am thankful that I don’t have to be alone on Thanksgiving and I’m surrounded by people who I love. I’m thankful for the big Thanksgiving dinner that the cast and crew will enjoy together (I hope I get to carve the turkey again and say grace). I’m thankful that my family who I can’t be with understands my job. These are just a few of the many things that I (Bryan Cheatham) am thankful for at this time of year.   The rest of my cast are very thankful as well:

Matt:  I’m very thankful for the opportunities I’ve been given in this past few years with this company. I feel like someone has been watching over me. It’s been the pinnacle of my life and I have become the man I have always wanted to be.

Joshua:  I’m thankful for my family (shout-out to the DuBois five) and all the support that they’ve always given me in all the endeavors that I take on. I’m especially thankful that the prayers that I said on New Year’s Eve coming into 2013 have all been answered for each member of my family.

Noah:  I am thankful that my mom could come to the show in Berlin.  I’m thankful to be so jacked and tan.

CodyI’m thankful to be able to experience Europe and to be part of this amazing troupe.

Kris:  I’m thankful to have a job where I have the ability to work with all my friends.  I’m thankful that for the first time ever, my family and close friends are able to come to the show!

Dylan:  I am thankful to have the support of loved ones and the opportunity to explore the world.

Billy:  I am so thankful for the love that has been given to me. It’s this love that has allowed me to love the life I live.

Vanya:  I’m thankful for having a great group of friends that have become like family. I am also thankful for my family back home and all the support they have provided me throughout my life. (Also that I get to rock the stage with the Chippendales!).

Kevin:  I’m thankful for the complete and total success of the 2013 Unleashed Tour and I’m always thankful for rock ‘n roll!

Theresa (Wardrobe Manager): For the opportunities I have had to take care of wonderful people while traveling the world, and my amazing friends and family who always support and love me. I’m also thankful to be surrounded by creativity and wonder throughout my career.

Allie (Tour Manager): I am thankful to have the chance to see the world and all it has to offer. I am thankful to get to share this experience with some of my best friends and the love and support of my family. And I am always thankful for kitties!

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Hot And Sweaty…

Posted in Chippendales, gym, tour, traveling, workout tips on November 22nd, 2013 by sexsinthecity

workout Being in a different city pretty much every day, one tries to find different ways to work out and stay in shape! Not always having a gym available can sometimes be trying and frustrating! So what do you do when your job is to stay in the best shape of your life? You improvise! One of the things that Noah, Dylan, and Joshua started doing is running through the mountains. What a beautiful way to start the morning and explore the sights each new city has to offer.  I believe a ten-mile run is the top distance right now, but a six-mile run is about average overall! As for the others who have toured before, we have brought along with us one of the most intense workouts around…the Insanity Workout video!  My good friend, Sean T, is the instructor of this extreme exercise craze. By the end of the video, we are cursing him and wanting to burn the DVD! The workout leaves you drenched in sweat and your muscles will ache the next day.  This is the price that one has to pay to get the results that you girls scream for every night! I will admit….hanging out late at after parties and then waking up the next morning to get on a bus and traveling to the next city can be hard motivation to workout.  However, night after night when fans scream for you and ask to take a picture with your shirt off and you know that photo will be on the Internet within hours….it makes you go the extra mile to look your best and stay in shape!  So thanks for the motivation ladies-you’re keeping us on our game!

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