1-on-1 with choreographer Sean Bankhead

Choreographer to the stars Sean Bankhead takes us inside the Lil Nas X performance of “Montero” on "Saturday Night Live."
8:41 | 06/18/21

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Transcript for 1-on-1 with choreographer Sean Bankhead
And we're back now with a peek behind the choreography first heard it was a pole dancing moment. On live television will not that spring in the culture to the children on Saturday Night Live. How young black and queer artist like little knots are pushing gender norms with the style and expertise. Of this man Shawn bankhead part of our look here goes out and proud the next generation. Here's ABC's Austin's. It was a performance. To remember. I will not vex and hitting the stage with a leather pants and a stripper pole. It's scandalous dance. His musical performance of Montero or call me by your name on SNL are breaking the norms of what you're used to seeing. In the mainstream media. We kind of can these ideas and would have been busy they must put it we had a marvelous the militias net and just kind of kept saying my dad was like why don't be afraid. The man behind it all yeah. Last days. 32 year old choreographer Shawn bankhead it's taken a long time for a performance like little nods x.'s. So beyond a stays like Saturday night lives don't you think. It was the prisoners economy date. I can keep it in terms haven't seen the or expects it would be a limbo. Artists. You might not recognizable. But you've seen his iconic routines. God's mistakes in my career where. I didn't name would soon understand that dams and oklahomans can happen and saw him pop culture on people's lives. One of the industry's biggest dancers. Choreographed superstars like Carty means Missy Elliott no mining and of course cruel not to. He's working with a new generation of talent given while building off pop legend. Creating a style all his own diverse stress syndrome and three do you feel like you're paving the way very young men of color and gay men of color. I do know that all this kind of walk on and beat my so always a McDonough ma am and how old were you when you first realize. Amen to answer he mumbled his enemies stories that she would just be amazed when you look at me yeah in the car seat gym and now beats you this man here always every. From a young age he was inspired by the MTD pop stars of the late nineties and early 2000 skyworks learned Janet Jackson dances and she. The NEC. Britney Spears always kind of pattern or rhythm and movement and dance in my. After his family moved to Atlanta would Sean was a kid. The dancer quickly found choreography snowstorm. Is closing people's argues that all of a sudden. I'm an opportunity soup easy dance class and there was a representative. From bad boy the boy in my class Mike mustang and decides. Can you weren't commuting brilliant and I had never heard anything in my I don't know what you teach. From there his career took golf. After working with the program fifth harmony. Get its first big break choreograph and former member Omani news music video of motivation. Motivation with the first being anything for me that people really relax the back. The village lose it. His creative moves quickly spreading from music videos who credit. I'll vote Yabuki growth. To tick talk. Where they've become viral trends. Dick Carter he wanted to create a dance center went home didn't want to learn and could actually. Hands as this points when he won grammys choreograph and Carty bee's eye popping performance for walk. I personally just it's easy Taylor he could. Card after card read any news item then performance related sequences are. Later. And I thought it was only here. Our lives and so does the Q quo. And you know stranger to the controversy. It's hot coals you know you want those seats. As if he had rock the boat enough already. Sean knew he had his chance to really send a message Clinton will not sexes intestinal performance I always had an I don't know that if I get my hands on Friday. Ridiculous you kind of take it the next how do you feel like he had something different you know they're allowed you to sort of tap. Such a boundary pushing choreography. It's just do you think there are legitimate got me and it's going to get an animal I mean there is known. Not as brazen this inspire you annoy. Absolutely even just meeting him and then within mountain we got along so well we're a young who gave elections so. I've got him he got median in the. He represented the cross section of two minority group says it as a gay man and as a black man. Tell me a little bit about some of the struggles that you face as a choreographer and brain needs a lot of exists. Did call moments being a young black cord from you know Jim labels and human management team. Under estimating my. I really businesses and where it you know a lot of times my wife Karen did offer more money for the same job and I. Does his performance and triumph over mainstream media and clear and black voices have historically been sound. Do you think we've made any progress at all where do you think we stand as far as the conversation goes. Maybe two steps you know not date d.s did not notice doesn't even really really really didn't think he's happen on just a whole generation. And pop culture whether the few words openly gay closeted pinning my dad I'm Susan like he was scared seem to feel better risky and can be done. Console her she didn't know. Well now come to beat. But those whose service days behind on home Shawn is gearing up for his next big product. Continuing to push the boundaries on and off the stage. And hoping to inspire a new generation of dancers inspiration as I hear sorrow and can teach and inspire. You grow and early and certain groups caution saying ABC news New York. Before we go a reminder. That the did deep pride collection is out now which includes Pixar marvel and Star Wars icons and characters for the first time. Part of the proceeds are going to organizations are on the world supporting LG BTQ plus community. And a few final thoughts now. In this same country where so many of us who are about my age and game grew up afraid to be thought or compared to a drag queen. One of the most popular shows in all of television today celebrates drag queens and the straight people love it. Gay marriage in America is now just marriage and the earth didn't stop spending. Today we're also learning about fired rusted he was an out gay man and an unsung hero of the civil rights movement. In the 1960s he was one of the first freedom riders served as an advisor to Dr. Martin Luther King. And helped organize the 1963. March on Washington. And if you're listening right now another out black gay man. Is here telling you this story. Times have changed. And to borrow a phrase. It gets better. So thanks so much for joining us here on prize on ABC news line I'm Steve Centanni. And for all of us here at ABC news thanks for watching. Until next time.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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