This year millions of college students graduated, and it has been anything but ordinary. Recent graduates are struggling to find jobs and most are living with their family. It has been difficult for many, but some are thriving during this time. Jordan Benton is a dancing graduate from The College of Charleston, and has used this time to make music videos starring herself dancing, which have gotten attention from the musicians she created the video for. This includes the Grammy winning Jazz band, Ranky Tanky.
Dancing During Covid
Of all the majors that would seem to be the most difficult to pursue, especially during the pandemic, dancing would seem to be the most inconvenient. Jordan however, has made it work. She created a dance video for fun, to the song “Freedom” by Ranky Tanky in her house, with her iPhone. She sent the video to Ranky Tanky’s email, and got a response from them fairly quickly asking her to be in the official music video for the song. Jordan then met and connected with Charleston poet and musician Marcus Amaker whom she now collaborates with.
Shooting "Freedom" And Other Videos
“I have not shot any of the videos myself except “Freedom”. Jordan created some of the videos at her Church, Seacoast. “The editing is done by others mostly. At first I was not getting paid, but I started getting paid once connecting with Ranky Tanky, and I did “Selah” by Kanye West and got some money from that.” The music video she did for “Selah” is what she describes as her “artistic protest” and it features her around Charleston doing contemporary dance.
Jordan goes on to tell us about her editing and process for creating her videos, “the first three videos I did not get paid, and I actually paid Jamal Tisdale to do that video editing and filming for me. I live at home so I am very fortunate, I don’t have to pay bills or rent. And people started venmoing me for my videos when I started working with Ranky Tanky and Marcus, they were like ‘no you have to get paid for the work you do’ and I was like ‘ok I am just honored to be able to dance with you guys.’ I actually met Carleton (one of the members of Ranky Tanky) at a Christmas concert I performed at and he spoke to me and we connected through that as well.”
Plans For After College
Jordan talks about her plans for after college saying she wanted to work for a dance company, and does not want to go back to school for a graduate program, “Not that I have PTSD from school, but I kind of do” she says as she laughs. Celeb asks Jordan if she plans to move to a big city for dance in the future assuming she would be interested in moving to Hollywood. “New York has always been my dream. But I think I would move somewhere out of this country before moving to Hollywood to be honest. There are 80,000 dancers out there so it is hard, but I don’t know how well I would fit into the professional dance scene. I feel like I would get too overwhelmed in Hollywood. I have been to Utah and I love the dance companies there. I have seen so much and I love Charleston, but so much of it looks the same. I try really hard to not make all of my videos look the same because Charleston does have that look to it. It is like you go outside and you see my videos and the viewers are probably like ‘oh she’s in Charleston.’
International Women's Conference
Chosen Women’s Conference is for a church in Charleston called Seacoast. Jordan specified that the conference is not just for this church, but it is for everyone around the world. “Someone in my church group told those ladies that they should use me. They wanted to know my story and asked for an interview. It was very cool and inspiring, and so many different ladies there, of all different colors and backgrounds, everyone was so different, and I think I was the youngest one there.”
Jordan films many of her videos at Seacoast. “I have so many people helping me out and I am so blessed. I didn’t realize how important it was to make an impact on everybody by word of mouth until I was in high school and throughout college I started doing shows and stuff, and I realized it is not about the talent sometimes, it is about kindness and being nice to people because no one wants to work with someone who is not really a nice or pleasant to be around.