Rihanna: Good Girl Gone Bad

Published on 8th Oct, 2008

Rihanna Good Girl Gone BadWhen Rihanna first hit the scene with ‘Pon de Replay’, she seemed to be nothing more than a one hit wonder – another pure pop gimmick. Who would have thought 3 years later she would not only still be around, but would have become the world’s most consistent chart topper? The main reason she has sustained is that she has a kick-ass team working behind the scenes – the best A&R department, glam squad & producers in the biz.

A driving force behind Rihanna’s visual appeal is Tina Landon. The legendary director / choreographer has been responsible for some of the most memorable moments in dance over the past 2 decades. Crafting the iconic moves of Janet Jackson, J-Lo, Britney Spears, Ricky Martin, Pussycat Dolls, Ciara, Christina Aguilera (& just about every other dance-dependant artist), Landon has been responsible for all of Rihanna’s videos & stage performances, from ‘Umbrella’ onwards.

Tina simultaneously rehearsed opening numbers for two major events recently, & used them to illustrate just how far Rihanna’s originally limited image has been stretched. Jetting back & forth between LA & New York to perform them within hours of each other proved a challenge (in Tina’s words it kicked her ass), but the results were spectacular.

The ‘MTV Video Music Awards’ saw Rihanna open with a rocking rendition of her current single, ‘Disturbia’, flanked by a troupe of demonic dancers. The number featured Sydney sisters Maya & Nandy McClean (pictured), who relocated to the US a couple of years back & quickly made a name for themselves singing & dancing with Prince. The twins jumped at the chance of working on the project: “We have met Rihanna a few times & she is such a sweetheart, so we thought it would be a fun gig. Plus Tina Landon has always been one of our favourite choreographers & when we heard she would be choreographing the show we simply could not pass up working with her either!”

Switching into full-blown glamazon mode, Rihanna kicked off New York’s ‘Fashion Rocks’ with a cover of Madonna’s ‘Vogue’. In a spot of genius casting, Tina booked Kevin Stea – one of Madonna’s original Voguers from the ‘Blonde Ambition’ days. Not only is he instantly recognizable to those in the know, but how impressive is it that two decades later he continues to look a million dollars & is still rocking the stage on a regular basis with the world’s biggest stars!
Strike a pose!
JP xx

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