Initiation: Meet Brooklyn Nets’ Dancer Coach Adar Wellington
Brooklyn Nets dance team coach Adar Wellington picked up pirouettes before the potty. “I pretty much came out of the womb dancing,” jokes the limber beauty, who parlayed concert touring stretches with Diddy and Rihanna into principle music video features for Kanye (“Lost In The World”) and Usher (“Scream”). Like Jay-Z’s infantile b-ball dynasty, the Jersey native is saying hello to Brooklyn, helping Barclays Center’s cleverly dubbed Brooklynettes kick BK flavor for your eyes and ears. “These girls are super-athletic and well-spoken; they’re the whole package, not just gorgeous and talented dancers,” says the entertainment coordinator, who choreographs, handpicks music and selects the dance team’s sporty garbs. “I’m not quite sure if Brooklyn is ready for us.” —John Kennedy
FIRST DUNK My last season as a Nets dancer, I was on the [sub-squad] Dunking Divas. I don’t get nervous when I dance, because I’m confident. But I was a wreck the first time I dunked. [Laughs] We practiced four hours before the game, so next time it’s game time—you just hope your body knew off memory how to get it done. I had two dunks: the double-basketball dunk and under-the-leg dunk—that one’s tricky. Doing that in front of basketball players and fans makes it even more nerve-wracking. I give credit to the players that can do it without a trampoline, but I got up there and got that ball in that hoop. I was so hyped I wanted to hang on that thing. LAST EMBARRASSING MOMENT I had a star role in a Vegas show called Peepshow. My number was a solo. And there are cracks in this stage. One performance—of course the one all the bigwig directors are watching—my six-inch stiletto heel got stuck in a crack in the stage. [Laughs] I fell and couldn’t get out of the crack! As a dancer you keep going and fake the funk. But no, the audience definitely knew. I was trying to yank my heel out of the crack and still perform. It was a disaster. I was on the floor for probably 30 seconds but it felt like 20 minutes. I never wanted to step back on that stage.