Confessions of a Backup Dancer

Confessions of a Backup Dancer


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glamour. access. scandal.
Ever wonder what your favorite pop divas are like AFTER the cameras stop rolling? What do they do behind closed doors? What are their parties like? What do they think about? What do they fight about? What do they really want? And who do they REALLY hook up with?
Kelly Kimball spent a summer as a backup dancer for Darcy Barnes, the biggest pop star in the world. Kelly's got the real story on Darcy, her life, her family, and her entourage — and she's spilling it here for the first time. If you think the life of a superstar can't possibly be all it's cracked up to be, you're wrong. It's all that and more. And it's all inside Kelly's tell-all diary: Confessions of a Backup Dancer.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780689870750
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books For Young Readers
Publication date: 06/01/2004
Edition description: Original
Pages: 272
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.25(h) x 0.90(d)
Lexile: 920L (what's this?)
Age Range: 14 - 18 Years

About the Author

A Simon & Schuster author.

Read an Excerpt

Thursday, May 23rd



Outfit: postman pants, black sleeveless tee with small but horrifying deodorant stain under left breast. (Was it there all day?)

Hair: a disaster. The roots aren't funny anymore.

Mood: distracted.

Fortune: Signs can lie. (I'm getting fortunes from this website tito told me about. They send a newsletter to my email every day along with like 35 ads but whatever, I like the fortunes.)

I was seriously bored at work today. Manning the front desk of Beatz Beachside Dance Studio in San Diego can be totally mind-numbing, especially when the only class going on is a seniors swing class in the far studio, studio C. Old people seniors, not high school seniors.

Anyway, I was reading some gossip online about Darcy Barnes and Jesse Nixon, the reigning teen king and queen of the pop universe (as seen on (M)TV!), and how they're supposedly secretly dating or something. the article said something about a house they'd bought together in the Hollywood Hills or one of those places. seems weird that they're dating even though they've known each other since they were like seven and on that Please Don't Do That on Television show or whatever it was called. I don't know if they're going out or not, but I guess it's kind of fun to think about. and I know one thing, if she's not dating him, she's a fool cause he is FINE.

I was so bored I read the article three times and was starting in on a fourth when the lovely Tito, my best friend in the universe who works at We Bop! the super-expensive tween boutique next door, threw open the front door and rescued me.

"hey girl!" he yelled. "look what I found in the back of the boutique! go try this on." he held out a baby tee with a cowboys and Indians scene on the front.

I go, "Tito I'm gonna look like a waitress at some goofy western-themed bar where the waitresses wear daisy dukes." Tito just goes, "Go try it on. it costs $85."

I was like, "what idiot spends $85 on a baby tee?" then I asked tito to watch the desk for a sec so I could go try it on. I ducked into this empty practice room, slipped off my sleeveless shirt, and pulled the new t-shirt over my head. with mirrors on three sides, I could see immediately that it fit perfectly.

perfectly, that is, if I was, for example, Darcy Barnes.

I mean, this t-shirt fit. Tight. My boobs never looked bigger. they weren't darcy barnes's size, of course, because all I got is a b-cup. ok, b-minus. ok, fine, I'm an a.

I stared at my reflection for a while, humming that old-school Darcy Barnes song "Love You Like a Lollipop," which happened to be drifting in from the lobby. swaying, watching my belly button swoop and drop and twist. it was riveting.

it took a moment before I realized I'd actually started doing the steps to "Lollipop," which I'd learned from watching the video about 400 million times. (I have the DVD, so sue me.) Anyway, before I knew it, I was totally going for it. my feet were racing, my head swinging, my hips shaking. the beat was constant but irregular...each verse had a bar where the tempo dropped, but I knew when those passages were coming and was ready for them. my body was cruising from beat to beat. I was becoming darcy herself.

I'd done it — I'd entered that zone you reach when you're dancing and you're completely consumed by the music, and your feet bypass your brain and carry your body weightlessly. That place where you stop thinking and start feeling. it doesn't happen every day, in fact it's pretty rare. I guess every dancer probably calls it something different. But Tito and I call it going THERE.

I was two bars away from the part in the video where the guy lifts darcy by one foot and tosses her into a backflip, and I realized I needed a guy. without warning, tito slipped in behind me. I never thought, "Where did he come from?" because Tito's just like that...always there when you need him. And THERE when I needed him. His hands came out, my foot went up, and I executed a flawless backflip.

Then, just like in the video, Tito faded into the background and I took the last few bars of the song solo. I spun, ground, whirled, and writhed, tito squealing the whole time. "WORK! WORK!"

I guess that means he liked it.

the music changed to some totally stupid Jewel song or something and tito and I went back into the lobby.

he goes, "that was flawless, Kel...seriously flawless. you are way better than any of those hooches in the darcy video."

tito is my total positive-feedback support-system best friend, and there's nothing I wouldn't do for him. but this fact sometimes makes me distrust comments like that. like, he's supposed to say that. he's my best friend, you know?

I go, "shut up! besides you could easily be one of the boys in the video. especially the one in the hockey jersey."

he goes shut up. he handed me a Twizzler and goes, "Listen Kelly I know I've got a lot to offer, but you're, like, on another level with the dancing. you're really GOOD. when you dance it feels so REAL. everyone's always talking about REALNESS all the time but you've got it." he goes, "Even Darcy Barnes is plastic. but you, Kelly Kimball are not. You're the real thing. REAL, girl!! Da real thang, G!!"

it cracks me up when tito gets all ghetto on me.

"Besides," he goes, "you're an aries and you were born in the year of the tiger. what do you expect? you're a BORN superstar. you need to believe that. do you believe it?" I was like whatever. and he goes, "No, not WHATEVER. do you believe it or not?"

the way he was staring at me, boring into my eyes, was almost freaky and it made me believe him for a second. I go, ok yes. I believe it!

without taking his eyes off of mine or even blinking, he goes, ok, I think we're ready.

I was like, ready for what?

he goes, "Kelly, that t-shirt I brought you is special. it's for your audition tomorrow." then he reached into his cargo pocket, pulled out a flyer, and handed it to me. "You're going to be famous. Stop one on the fame train is tomorrow."

I looked down at the flyer. on one side was a silhouette of a girl who was like jamming in front of a bunch of bright stage lights. her hair was flying, and she looked like she was going THERE, too.

I flipped it over.

How REAL are you?


Copyright © 2004 by 17th Street Productions, an Alloy company

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