Megan Thee Stallion is to twerking what LeBron James is to basketball.
On July 12, rapper Megan Thee Stallion was shot in both of her feet.
“I was saddened and stunned, but relieved to find out she was okay,” said Danyelle “Sweet Dee” Solana, a local hip-hop dance instructor. “Megan’s probably still processing all of it before going into detail of the events.”
Solana, 40, has a connection with the 25-year-old “Savage” rapper because they’re both originally from Texas, and they Twerk and Bounce dance.
“I learned this style of dance over ten years ago,” Solana said, “to my knowledge Bounce is the dance style and Twerking is part of Bounce.”
Twerking is when dancers squat or get onto their hands and knees, and shake their buttocks.
“With Bounce, you have moves like The Wiggle, The Clap, The Exerciser, and The Twerk — some of these names I’ve heard other people use and some I made up myself — so all those collectively make up Bounce.”
On Megan Thee Stallion’s BET Awards 2020 music video, she’s depicted with her backup dancers in a Mad Max-type scenario performing the same dance moves that Solana teaches in her North Park dance studio. Megan begins the act with her new “Girls In The Hood” joint, then seamlessly transitions into rapping the vocals to her “Savage” cut featuring Beyonce, which copped the number one spot on Billboard Hot 100 song chart in late May. The BET video garnered 3.9 million views since it was uploaded on July 1, and a boatload of comments.
“We can’t lie, she the CEO of twerkin,’” said one fan.
“Twerk has been around for a while, like going back in the early 90s, I think,” Solana said, “but I came across it around 2010, then I went to New Orleans in 2012 and saw all the people, but mostly women, dancing to the Bounce music, and I fell in love with it. I’ve always loved moving and shaking my booty and hips and I felt this took it to the next level.”
Prior to the countywide lockdown, Solana’s “Booty Lounge” was packed at full capacity at 20.
“I had to start capping the class and wait-listing because we take up so much space while dancing. I wanted to make sure everyone could do it safely.”
On Solana’s website, a video shows her students on all fours on a yoga mat, shaking their booties.
“I use Megan’s music when teaching my classes. I then tried teaching online, but was finding it hard to vibe with it. I love the energy of a live class and thrive off of it. I’m going to start uploading more tutorials and probably some live Zoom classes and have even toyed with the idea of conducting classes outside, but not sure how well received Twerking in public will be.”
Twerking is not for everyone. After Megan was shot, male rap artists and their fans took to “The Gram” and Twitter to bash on the “All Dat” rap artist and her Twerk dance maneuvers.
“Say what you will about it, but Twerking and Bouncing is hard. There is a technique and body mechanics involved. I’m also a personal trainer and massage therapist, so I try my best to incorporate terminology, anatomy and body mechanic basics in each class so that way students have a better understanding of the movement and how their body responds to it. I get that it is a provocative way of moving your body, but I believe that any type of dance and movement is good for your mind, body and soul connection.”
Regarding Megan’s assailant, nobody, including Megan, is giving specifics on who shot her. On July 27, Megan logged onto her Instagram to address her haters and update her fans: “There’s nothing to joke about. It was nothing for y’all to start going and making up fake stories about. I didn’t deserve to get shot.”
“Celebrities are still human beings,” Solana said, “but unfortunately are caught up in this content-hungry world.... I’m sure she would have rather kept it to herself for a while but felt pressured to make some sort of statement. The other person involved may be another famous person or at least have a celebrity connection in which there may be some legal stuff involved, and Megan may not be allowed to say much more.”
According to a Los Angeles Police Department July 15 news release regarding the shooting that morning, it reads in part: “Multiple individuals were detained [and] subsequent to their investigation, officers arrested Daystar Peterson, (who is also known as [singer and rapper] Tory Lanez), he was charged with 25400(A)1 PC-Concealed Firearm in Vehicle. He was booked at Hollywood Jail... and bonded out later in the day. One person was transported to the hospital and received medical treatment for a foot injury.” The report makes no mention of Megan Pete, the rapper’s legal name, although, she announced on her Instagram that she was shot that Sunday morning.