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Kobe Bryant’s dance teacher explains what it was like to teach him

Jason Berkowitz told The Hollywood Reporter what it was like to teach Kobe Bryant

The city of Los Angeles will host a public memorial service for Kobe Bryant, his daughter Gianna and the seven others who died in a helicopter crash on Jan. 26 in Calabasas. In this photo, former NFL quarterback Peyton Manning pays tribute to Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gianna at the NFL Honors football award show Saturday, Feb. 1, 2020, in Miami. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)
Former NFL quarterback Peyton Manning pays tribute to Kobe Bryant and his daughter Gianna at the NFL Honors football award show Saturday, Feb. 1, 2020, in Miami.
David J. Phillip, Associated Press

Kobe Bryant’s old dance teacher in Los Angeles recently opened up about what it was like to teach Bryant, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

  • Bryant passed away in late January in a helicopter crash, which killed nine people total, including Bryant and his daughter, Gianna Bryant.

What happened: Jason Berkowitz landed a dance teacher position at Bobby Ball Talent Agency to help coach Bryant on dancing. He was told he would teach someone who needed to remain secret. Then, he learned it was Bryant, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

  • Berkowitz: “I asked him point blank why he wanted to learn tap, and he told me that he knew Michael Jordan took ballet and as one of his heroes, he wanted to do something similar to learn rhythm, balance and coordination. He was doing something to emulate his heroes and to be the best at his craft.”
  • Berkowitz: “He wasn’t a superstar in the room. He was a dude and we worked together. He was even curious about my career and what I was doing and generous in hearing about my dreams.”

What’s next: Both Kobe and Gianna’s bodies were recently returned to their family. As I wrote for the Deseret News, the family is expected to release funeral details soon.