Charm La’Donna On The Importance Of Mentoring The Next Generation

Charm La'Donna
Photo by Rolexx | Design by BrownStyle Magazine

Charm La’Donna is a renowned choreographer, dancer, entrepreneur, recording artist, and creative director who’s forged an indelible legacy in the world of dance and entertainment. 

Since her teenage years as a backup dancer for the legendary Madonna’s 2006 Confessions tour, the multi-hyphenate has used her love for dance to uplift and inspire others to follow their dreams, much like her mentor Fatima Robinson who saw something special in her at a young age.

“I was at rehearsal, and I kept messing up. Instead of writing me off or dismissing me, she told me to go home and practice. The next day, I came back and nailed the routine,” La’Donna tells BrownStyle Magazine exclusively. “She could have let me be deflated and just hired someone else. Instead, she trusted what she saw in me.”

Never forgetting her roots, the Compton, California choreographer continues to pay homage to her mentor by pouring into the next generation of dancers and using what she learned from Robinson to conduct herself as a businesswoman in the world of entertainment.

“She taught me that it is imperative to know my strengths and trust my creativity and choices,” she shares about one of the most profound lessons she’s learned from her mentor. “Confidence is what makes the clients trust you and align with your vision.”

La’Donna’s confidence and creativity have ultimately led her to become one of the most sought-after choreographers in the industry. The UCLA graduate, who earned her bachelor’s degree in world arts and cultures, has flexed her choreographic skills and graced music videos for some of the biggest names in the music industry, including Becky G, Lizzo, and Selena Gomez, just to name a few. 

Recently, her mesmerizing moves came to life in Dua Lipa’s “Dance The Night” featured in Barbie: The Album. Her exceptional choreography has also graced prestigious events like the Super Bowl, Coachella, Grammy Awards, and Academy Awards.

We would be remiss not to mention that La’Donna won the 2019 MTV Video Music Award for “Best Choreography” for ROSALÍA and J Balvin’s Con Altura music video.

La’Donna has not only come to understand the value of being a skilled dancer but also the significance of mentorship and giving back to her community. She founded her dance and creative company, Charm La’Donna Inc. to mentor up-and-coming dancers and choreographers.

“This business can be heavy for creatives,” she reveals. “I know how powerful representation is, and I am passionate about helping dancers and choreographers achieve their goals and dreams.”

Many bright and talented dancers have walked the halls of the company. As an advocate for mentorship, La’Donna has even given her students the opportunity to work on creative projects. “I love finding new talent and giving them their first chance at building their career,” she shares.

La’Donna believes that the dance community can benefit from more mentorship and support for emerging talents. She notes, “Mentorship provides guidance and support in an industry that is not always kind. I think the dance community can get stronger and grow in more ways through mentorship. We can help protect, preserve, and grow dance for future generations.”

She concludes, “One day, our protégés will be the mentors. We should give them the blueprint for when it’s their time. Everyone is chasing their passion. We should help each other along the way.”

Editor’s Note: This is story has been edited and condensed for clarity.

Heather Elitou is the Senior Managing Editor at BrownStyle Magazine, where her expertise has led to the publication's success. A devoted mother of three brilliant young women and a loving wife, she finds joy in nurturing her family. Beyond her professional and family life, Heather enjoys savoring the delights of a well-crafted cheese board. She is also known for her love of soulful conversations about living a soft life.