Roky Mendoza set off in new directions from his native Dominican Republic to broaden his horizons and excel as a professional dancer. Figure Skating is one of the passions of this Dominican artist living in Norway, better known as “@TheRealRoky”, who also carries a message of inclusion and acceptance through his platforms. With a background in classical ballet, modern and folkloric dance, he undertook in a difficult and competitive market such as the Norwegian one, starting as a dance teacher in local schools in Oslo. “That’s when I got to know the versatile world of figure skating and started participating in FreeStyle competitions at the Spikersuppa Rink Ice”, said the dancer, whose dexterity and colorful blue hair quickly made him popular and today he is part of the “Jar Isforum”, where he trains at a professional level.
Where were you born and in what school were you trained?
I was born in Castillo, Duarte Province. When I was 4 years old my parents decided to move to Santo Domingo, where I lived for more than 15 years until I came to Norway. In Santo Domingo I discovered the world of dance, at first I belonged to different cultural projects where I was able to stand out by having a good expression in dance, then I decided to look for a place where I could learn dance technique.
Did you face any kind of prejudice when you decided to become a dancer?
My parents didn’t understand what homosexuality was at that time and I had no emotional support from them. It was difficult to face alone and even more when I saw the society that discriminated me without understanding that every day my desire to live was taken away, I felt alone, without friends and without someone who could understand me until I was able to go to psychologists from the educational center where I studied and they were able to guide me. They made family appointments that helped my parents understand what homosexuality is. At 12 I entered my first dance academy, the teacher Soraya Gallardo offered me a scholarship, she was also a dance teacher at UNAPEC where she gave me the opportunity to represent the university in artistic activities with the dance corps” and continue my training as a dancer in her private academy. The university gave me the benefit of being able to study languages and some careers, my teachings of contemporary, classical and folkloric dance is thanks to that teacher who gave me the opportunity to develop this talent that you see in me today.
What motivated you to seek new horizons to develop yourself?
In an activity at the Palace of Fine Arts I met Norwegian love. At that time where just exchanging words with admiration for the staging of the piece I danced that day was reason to fall in love with him. He came the next day when it was my turn to dance again and brought me roses. Conversations arose and his interest in getting to know me increased. We lasted 3 years of dating and then he proposed to come to Norway. When I got there it was a change from heaven to earth and from dancing in big shows, I started working as a dance instructor and teacher and little by little I became interested in ice skating. I never thought Norway would be a country where I would live, but destiny is destiny.”
When do you get into the world of figure ice skating?
In 2015 I get to know ice skating on a visit to Oslo, I saw it as just another hobby because where I lived in Nordland, Norway they didn’t have a skating club, then in 2017 I moved to Oslo. There I started to train alone in different rinks and arenas, where the public could freestyle (free study).
Every year I became more and more popular at spikersuppa rink because of my skills and the colorful blue hair that flowed with every move. I decided to join a skating club where I could learn skating technique and develop in that art and I came to “Jar is Forum”.
Why the change of style?
In 2012 I decided to try blue hair, I was looking for something uncommon that represented me as an artist. Every day a new dancer came out and stood out with their style and originality. Every day I was perfecting my style, blue hair has been part of the last 8 years in my life and it is my favorite color.