By steven·for Shots Weekly On February 3, 2016
Many of you are probably already familiar with Miss Ksyn, she forged her career performing with superstars like Beyoncé, Sean Paul, Ciara, 50 Cent, Drake and the list goes on. In 2015, she launched a dance series, Body Language: The Art of Seduction which focuses on teaching everyday women, with little to no dance experience, to embrace their inner goddess.
We were a little surprised that the fame hasn’t gotten to her head… did we mention she worked with Beyoncé and Drake? Ksyn Cason has always been real and down-to-earth. She embodies what it means to be a strong and successful Black woman and we were thrilled to have her grace our cover for our first Black History Month issue… a nod to the militant Black Panther Party and the legendary Black exploitation era, an ethnic sub-genre of the exploitation film industry that emerged in the United States during the early 1970s.
How many years have you been professionally dancing in business? I’ve been dancing since I was little. Since I was probably around 4 or 5. As far as being in the industry, about 7/8 years professionally and making checks for it.
Can you tell us the pros of being a dancer and being in this business?
You can do what you love. Whether it’s dancing, modeling, acting, performing and get paid for it. I love to perform, so dance is just one of those outlets that I use as well as modeling and acting. At the same time… Like I said, just being able to do what you love, make a profit from it and just live out your dream. A lot of times parents and family members don’t always promote living the dream because it’s just that in their head. A dream. It’s not a reality.
"Who would have ever thought that this young girl born and raised in the Bronx would be so gun-ho that, This is what I’m going to do. Would end up dancing with all these artist, doing all these shows, all these live performances, touring the world... You wouldn’t even think that. It’s definitely one of the pros for me."
Also, just meeting genuine people. A lot of times in the industry we hear a lot of the cons from from rumors or even just people we know. I’ve actually been able to meet and stay connected with genuine people in the industry who have now gone from people I’ve worked with, to friends, to basically family. I would definitely say that’s one of the biggest pros for me because a lot of my closest friends, had I not been doing this, I may not have met them. Then of course, you know the Coin. My little cutie Coins. Definitely the fact that I’m able to do what I love to do. That for me is a big plus.
What are some of the cons? Like with anything just the whole genuine factor. It’s that whole … Even minus dancing with me just being in the industry… people start seeing you on TV more and they start seeing the moves that you’re making and the next thing you know, they go from not liking you to all of a sudden, “Hey girl, how you doing.” You’re like, “Wait. Pause. Time out.” Sometimes it’s a lot of that kind of BS. That kind of phoniness. That kind of fake that comes with everything, that’s just life. Also the industry is just “The Industry” it can eat you alive if you let it. You have to come in with a thick skin. You’re going to have people tell you things about yourself that you probably never even thought of.
Who would be your #WCW… or a woman that inspires you? Actually, I never really thought about it… the women in my family… that’s important. My family is majority women. I look up to each and every one of them.
If it happens to be Wednesday [you] may be my WCW… other than that, I’m my own #WCW God-dang-it!
What would you say to those that think this industry is only trying to objectify women sexually? I feel that’s a two-part answer…. a yes and a no. I feel as though they only do what you let them do. A lot of times if you’re on set of a video and you’re not the main girl, you’re bringing your own stuff. You’re deciding what you wear. If you decided to wear some strings, they’re not going to say, “no.” Because you decided to bring some strings. Since you brought it, that must mean you’re comfortable wearing it. If you do, then okay, fine… Who do you blame for that? Who do you say is objectifying who? Is it them agreeing and picking that outfit for you to wear, or is it you bringing that outfit in the first place, if you might not have been comfortable in it?
Do we get objectified? Yes, we do. How much of it are we putting ourselves out there to do? The thing is that everybody’s comfortability factor is different. What’s good for the goose may not be good for the gander. Somebody might see something and say, “Oh my god, that’s too sexy. Oh my god, you’re a mom. Oh my god, you should do this. Oh my god, this and that…” Okay, that’s you, though. You’re not that person. If you talk to her, in her mind, there’s a logical reason for her to do wear what she's wearing, whether it’s vain or not vain. I think that that’s the two-part answer for me. You can only objectify the people who allow you to objectify them. Not everybody’s opinion is the same about what’s being objectified and what’s, actually, being abused or whatever. They can only do it if you allow them to do it.
Why did you start Body Language: The Art of Seduction and how do you feel it’s helping women empower themselves?
It started with my friends… I’m always requested to make routines for them to do for Valentine’s Day for they “boo-things.” It got to the point where there was so many people asking, I thought, “is this something that really needs to happen, that needs to be done?” They answered…
"We forget sometimes how to be sexy. That struck a chord with me. As women, that’s one of the—not the best—but one of the assets that we have is the art of being sexy. We have so many different ways to be sexy."
To talk to my friends and hear them say, some of them even have kids, that they feel they don’t have it anymore, or they feel they need to spice things up, or they don’t really feel too sexy… as women, we need to embody the things that we have. The things that you can change, okay, you try and you work hard to change. There are some things that you can’t change. What do you do with that? You have to accept it. One better way to accepting it is to know yourself. For me, that’s what being sexy is all about. It’s really about knowing yourself. It doesn’t necessarily mean you have to be half-naked. Yes, we do consider that being sexy, however, sexy is in the way you walk, in the way you talk, in the way that you present yourself. I feel as though that’s one of the things that, for me, when I perform, I like to sell. I might not be able to out-dance the next person, but I can sell you. I can sell you this image that you see. It was like, “Is there a way that I can teach women to have it like a light switch. You can turn it on. You can turn it off. Most women don’t even know where to find that.”
That was, basically, how the class really started. I go through how to walk in a heel, how to put your mindset in a frame where if you do a dance for your guy or your girl then it’s role play. It’s a different kind of thing. It adds spice. I teach you a routine that you can take home, or I teach you moves that you can actually do in a club.
It’s been up and running for a year. Throughout the entire year, I’ve been seeing the change, the confidence. Once you start feeling sexy and feeling good about yourself and waking up in the morning, it changes your energy, and everybody sees that change of energy. The next thing you know, it’s a lot more things, and a lot more positivity that’s attracted to you because your energy is now more attractive, it’s more positive. That, for me, is the most empowering thing as a woman, is realizing, “Yes, I’m a woman. This is me. I’m comfortable with me and let me show you how comfortable I am.”
Who is your favorite Black history figure and why?
One of my favorite Black History figures would have to be Harriet Tubman. It took a lot of strength, courage and leadership to do all that she did throughout the 1850’s.
What are your thoughts on Staci Dash suggesting we “get rid” of BHM and the BET awards? My thoughts on Staci Dash suggesting we “get rid” of BHM and the BET awards is that everyone is entitled to their own opinion, whether we agree with it or not. It makes for a very good social debate though.
What does #blacklivesmatter mean to you and what do you think we can do to make positive changes in our community? In regards to the bigger picture, Our lives matter but right now the focus is on that of black lives and bringing to light what’s been going on in our community for so many years. I feel as a community we need to also bring to light the positives and create more opportunities for our youth to stay off the streets, out of trouble and amongst positive influences.