MTV's Made — one of the cable channel's numerous current reality series — came to Charleston last spring, searching the local high schools for young characters with high hopes and big aspirations. "Made is about making dreams come true," reads MTV's press release on the show. "We're here to prove that with dedication, hard work, and a little help from MTV, kids just like you can accomplish anything they set their minds to."
MTV hooked up with Wilkerson Whittle, a student at James Island Charter High School. Whittle wanted to learn how to get down properly and bust moves as a hip-hop dancer. He landed the central role.
MTV also enlisted Alternese "Neasy" Griffin (a.k.a. Rage), a hip-hop choreographer and dancer, to teach Whittle the moves. Griffin leads a dance company called KunFewZion, and she regularly leads classes and gives lessons at local dance studios and schools. "MTV just called me out of the blue at one of the studios where I work, and we went from there," she says. "I had to turn him into a hip-hop dancer and a ladies man in only five weeks. At first, it was a little scary, and I had to get a little rough with him, but he transformed in the end. He got a little rhythm and he was happy in the end." After Griffin worked with Whittle, she arranged a dance battle at the Speak Freely Foundation, a nonprofit organization that supports local youth in the arts. She invited local DJ AKFool to spin at the event. "It was a confidence builder for our boy."