Sitting at Buffa’s, a bar in the Marigny neighborhood of New Orleans, Nick talks about his evolution as a dancer. “I started dancing at 8, but didn’t really take it seriously until I was about 16.” His brother, also a competitive dancer who goes through DaM3dGE, gave him the nickname “Fury”. “He saw that I had a lot of rage when I was younger, and how dancing helped me channel that. I started to realize that when I was dancing, I was really talking with the audience and that I I could use it as a way to make them feel the way I felt As a child, he used to practice in a closet with the lights off – a way to help him block out the feeling of being watched and just focus on his movement. These days, he’s used to dancing for audiences from DC to Atlanta to Memphis. When he’s back in New Orleans, he can usually be found at local clubs and dives, styling freely to Bounce music in the place where she was born. Some Saturdays you can find him at Republic NOLA, a warehouse district club where DJ K Strikez plays. “If you really want the real feel of New Orleans Bounce, you can’t beat Thursday nights at Dragon’s Den on the street Esplanade. That’s when HaSizzle plays,” Fury said with a smile. “Let me tell you, you got the right DJ and the right beat, this crowd is gonna be throwing ass all night.”
Nick’s passion for New Orleans culture is as evident as his love for the city’s music. “I’ve seen so many hot scenes all over the country, but no one looks like it here. The city is just built differently. It’s a different type of hospitality than you find elsewhere, and it’s all about you having fun.” He also finds comfort in the food he grew up on. “Wherever I go to dance, I always miss food. I love Taste [a local donut joint]. I love donuts. If people ask me where to eat, I can’t even lie, I send them to Brother. Brother’s Food Mart is a chain of convenience stores, with what is widely recognized as the best gas station fried chicken in all of the lower 48.
Nick also finds ways to converse with the crowd through his style. At Buffa, he shows off shoes he custom-made, one jeweled orange and one black. A matching orange shirt and a chain with a diamond heart complete the look. Before a showcase, he can head to Sneaker Politics, a sneaker store in the French Quarter, to find new kicks that will complete an outfit. “I like gold, I like dazzling shit! t. I don’t want people to be able to take their eyes off me when I’m dancing.
When he dances on Saturday there will be no pre-selected music, and it is important to Fury that he has a clear head in the face of the energy of the crowd. He will fast and meditate beforehand, and make sure he has time alone. The end result will be what he sees as his ongoing conversation with those who watch him dance. “I’m not normally an emotional person, so when I dance my goal is to let you know what’s going on inside me. I can use this moment to express happiness or pain or whatever I’m going through. And I like to see people smile, I like to blunder and make people laugh.