Skye Mattox, granddaughter of jazz legend Matt Mattox, was highlighted in Dance Magazine's On The Rise column this April while dancing in On The Town. After our profile came out, she took the stage several times as Ivy, the lead role usually performed by Megan Fairchild (and later, Misty Copeland.) Her first gig since that show closed in September will be this month's American Dance Machine for the 21st Century revue at New York's Joyce Theater, December 21–January 3, dancing featured roles in numbers by Jerome Robbins, Bob Fosse and Jack Cole. I caught up with her to find out more.
Photo by Lucas Chilczuk
How did you get involved with ADM21?
Our producer Nikki Atkins had taken class with my grandfather years ago, and after seeing me in a show a couple years ago, she came up and found me, and told me about the project.
Have you done this kind of show before?
Not here in New York. We go from two hours of learning the Oklahoma ballet to two hours of Tommy. You have to completely change your mindset, your style. I can feel it at night when I go home, for sure!
What else have you been up to since On The Town closed?
I ended up being out of the show for its last five weeks because I broke my fifth metatarsal. So I was rehabbing that, and getting back to class. I had never been injured to that extent before. It’s good to be able to take care of yourself, take some downtime. Eight shows a week for a year is a lot!
What’s it like dealing with the close of a show?
Exciting and really terrifying all at the same time. You go from being secure in your job to getting thrown into complete uncertainty, having to make sure you're in shape, making it to those calls. But it's motivating more than anything else. You just start to miss performing.
ADM21 dancers Skye Mattox, Tommy Scrivens, Shonica Gooden. Photo by Kyle Froman, courtesy ADM21.
Are you able to celebrate the holidays?
My family is up in Massachusetts, and I don't have quite enough time to get home, but there are always friends you can celebrate with—my second family, including many people in this cast, is here in New York. This show is gonna be killer. It's nonstop dancing for over two hours. When I broke my foot, I learned that I need to pace myself. We were in five-show weekends, I had just been on for Ivy in both shows that Sunday, and then the next day I traveled to New Hampshire to teach a master class. That’s when I broke my foot.
Any New Year's resolutions?
I’m gonna really look after what I need for my mind, not just my body. Sometimes you overload so much, you want to do everything. I want to focus on what I can actually handle without going crazy.