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"We're in the theater, house lights go down, curtain flies... and it was in that moment that I decided that I wanted to do what she was doing and I wanted to do it with that company."

After graduating from Whitney Young Magnet High School, Chicago native Carlton Wilborn joined Hubbard Street Dance Chicago in 1982. There, he danced in pieces by Lou Conte, Claire Bataille, Margo Sappington, and Lynne Taylor-Corbett, among others. He was a featured dancer in Madonna’s Blond Ambition and Girlie Show tours. Wilborn currently resides in Los Angeles.

November 24, 2015: Carlton Wilborn discusses his extensive performance career, which includes several years with Hubbard Street Dance Chicago and two international concert tours with Madonna. He addresses issues of race and sexuality in the Chicago dance community, reflects on the lessons he learned while working with Lou Conte and Madonna, and recalls many experiences that helped him grow as a dancer and person.

Carlton Wilborn, Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, Jennifer Girard, performance, stage, dance, Lynne Taylor Corbett, black man in silk suit

"Remember what you're made of."

"I always say to myself, 'There's a legacy for what people expect of you, dude.'"

"I wanted to be the leading guy already and I hadn't earned it yet."

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