Lubbock teenager draws a crowd with self-taught dancing - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

Lubbock teenager draws a crowd with self-taught dancing

Worn dance spot (Source: Ashlyn Tubbs) Worn dance spot (Source: Ashlyn Tubbs)
Victor Yanez (Source: Ashlyn Tubbs) Victor Yanez (Source: Ashlyn Tubbs)
Source: Ashlyn Tubbs Source: Ashlyn Tubbs
Victor watching YouTube (Source: Ashlyn Tubbs) Victor watching YouTube (Source: Ashlyn Tubbs)
Victor & grandma (Source: Ashlyn Tubbs) Victor & grandma (Source: Ashlyn Tubbs)

Victor Yanez is often phoneless.

"I'm always on it," Yanez said, "so when I get in trouble, she'll take it from me."

His grandma, Margaret Alvarado, typically sticks to those groundings.

"If he doesn't have anything to do, he's always getting himself into some kind of trouble," Alvarado said.

But sometimes, she makes exceptions.

"I use her phone," Yanez said.

He only borrows it temporarily, because this 13-year-old is mainly focused on music.

"When it comes down to his dancing, he's serious about that," Alvarado said, "but other than that, he acts like my 3 year old."

Yanez channels his energy into choreography that he has practiced for more than two years.

"He started doing these moves with his hands at first," Alvarado said, "and then his feet started moving."

As far as these two know, Yanez's dubstep moves are unique.

"I'm hoping that somewhere somebody else is dancing that way," Alvarado said, laughing.

They actually are, on YouTube, where Victor found his inspiration.

"I first watched a video and then I tried to do it," Yanez said. "It was [to the song] Pumped Up Kicks. I'd watch the full video and then I'd go outside and I'd try it piece-by-piece."

That's how Victor's unique hobby began.

"At the time, I was sharing a room with my uncle and I didn't want him to see me," Yanez said.

So the corner of 51st and Avenue A became his wide-open dance floor.

"I turned my back against the cars so they really wouldn't see me," Yanez said, "and then as I got better then I started facing towards the cars."

He practices there almost every day, so now this routine is a confidence boost for Yanez, who Alvarado said normally stays to himself.

"Only when it starts raining, then he'll come in," Alvarado said, "but other than that, no. In the winter he's out there also."

Alvarado jokes that it is embarrassing.

"She didn't know what I was doing," Yanez said, "because I looked weird."

Not that Alvarado sees often.

"He won't dance in front of me," she said. "Guess I'm the biggest critic he has…I don't know."

Victor shies away from her view, and the sidewalks

"The concrete tears up my shoes," Yanez said.

So a bald spot grows on the grass as he works on his skills.

"Everything else was easy, it was just my arms," Yanez said. "My legs? They were made to dance."

Yanez's works in progress draw a curious audience from the road.

"People will slow down on the highway and some have literally parked to watch him," Alvarado said. "I don't want them to think that he's crazy or something."

But Yanez focuses on his music and looks past criticism.

"I see a lot of kids they stare out their car windows, watching," Yanez said, "and I hope it gets them thinking about if they could do it."

His love for the music, and his hopes for the kids, keep him going, despite the lack of lessons, and the lack of personal space.

"I don't think there's going to be a day when I just can't dance no more," Yanez said.

His vision is to not only dance in front of Alvarado when "he makes it big," but someday trade his worn dirt spot for a world stage.

"Just keep trying," Yanez said.

He hopes that one day people will drive to him, not past.

"Don't listen to other people's opinions," Yanez said. "Just go on your own."

Margaret is proud of Yanez, but wants him to find a dance teacher in Lubbock who can help him get even better so "he can go places."

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