Nia Dennis' Black Excellence Gymnastics Routine Is a Thing of Beauty: Celebs React
By Antoinette Bueno
Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images
Talk about stealing the show. UCLA gymnast Nia Dennis' jaw-dropping floor routine on Saturday as she competed for her team against Arizona State went viral over the weekend, thanks to her incredible performance to hits from Black artists like Kendrick Lamar, Missy Elliott, Megan Thee Stallion, Tupac Shakur and more.
Dennis, a 21-year-old senior, executed the almost two-minute routine to perfection, landing her tumbling passes and showing off her dancing skills. Her teammates and coaches were also heartwarmingly cheering her on the entire time, even hitting some of the dance moves with her. She scored a 9.95 for her joyful performance, taking home first place and helping UCLA score the win.
UCLA Gymnastics tweeted the entire routine, writing, "This is what #blackexcellence looks like. @DennisNia does it again! 🔥"
Elliott also commented on the routine -- which uses her 2003 hit, "Pass That Dutch" -- writing, "Snappin" along with a fire emoji.
Meanwhile, Alicia Keys wrote of Dennis, "Look at this unstoppable power and confidence!! 💥 💥 💥. Was just talking about how nothing gives you more power then being yourself! Shine @DennisNia, I'm inspired!!"
👀👀👀 look at this unstoppable power and confidence!! 💥💥💥 Was just talking about how nothing gives you more power then being yourself! Shine @DennisNia, I’m inspired!! Going into the weekend like 🤸🏽♂️ 🤸🏽♂️ 🤸🏽♂️ pic.twitter.com/wd2EAvCATO
When speaking to the Los Angeles Daily News about her show-stopping routine, she talked about showing her personality and culture in her performance.
"This routine definitely reflects everything that I am today as a woman, and of course I had to incorporate a lot of parts of my culture," she said. "I wanted to have a dance party because that's my personality and of course I had to shout out LA because we out here, UCLA."