Looking Back…

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2019 flew by, and I am shocked that the new year is right around the corner. So much has happened this year especially within the past month, and I have a lot of catching up to do. Here are some of the highlights of October…

1 ) My mom is pregnant again

I never expected to hear this, but I found out that I am going to have another sibling in April! I am very excited to meet the newest addition to the family, and I am looking forward to all of the wonderful memories that will be made.

2 ) I took my SAT and applied to two universities

This was very stressful because I decided to wait until senior year to take my SAT, but I completed it at the beginning of the month and met the early action deadline for two universities. I should hear back very soon, so I am getting very anxious. I still have a few more to send though…

3 ) I choreographed two contemporary/modern solos for YAGP

I was asked to choreograph two solos for dancers competing in the Youth American Grand Prix this season, and I could not be more thankful for the opportunity. It was truly an honor to work with them, and I am absolutely blown away by their talent. I honestly felt like I was rehearsing two young principal dancers… I know that they will go far, and I am very excited for them to showcase their skills.


Also, Nutcracker is less than a week away, and we will be back in the theater in just a few days. Sorry I crammed all the updates into one post, but I hope that you are all doing well. Happy November!!

What have you been up to recently? How was your October? Do you have anything fun planned this month? I would love to hear from you guys because it has been bit since my last post. Thanks for reading.

Retourner

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This week marks the beginning of a brand new season, and I am so excited for all of the amazing adventures that await. This is a very big year for me because I am a senior in the professional-trainee division, so this will be my final year with the academy. I have made so many great memories throughout the past five years, and I am so thankful for all of the wonderful opportunities that have had. The fact is, I am not certain where my future in dance leads because job contracts are so competitive. As much as I would love to dance in a company, nothing is guaranteed, so I am going to embrace every moment that I have in the studio this year. I am not going to complain about the fatigue, the stress, the aching muscles, the blistered toes, and the long rehearsal days… I am just going to dance my heart out, and enjoy doing what I love.

The Nutcracker, Don Quixote, Professional Mixed Rep, Mulan, “an unwritten story,” and Night of Variations are all scheduled to take the stage, and I cannot wait to begin preparing for these productions. I know that this will be an incredibly busy season, but it will certainly be one to remember. I hope that you join me for another great year…

Thanks for reading!

A Humbling Experience

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With each breath, I remember how lucky I am to be alive, and I thank God for the health of myself, friends, and family. It is so easy to take “the little things” in life for granted, but it is important to remember that everything can change in an instant. Nothing is ever guaranteed. As I let my feet sink into the earth, I embrace the sounds of nature and consider how fortunate I am to hear the birds sing. I think about how blessed I am to have vision that allows me to see the amazing world that surrounds me, and a voice to speak what is on my mind… I thank God for waking me up because today truly is a gift.


I danced for the patients at the hospital yesterday, and it was a very humbling experience. Emotions stirred within me as little kids reached for the tutus, stretched their arms up, and moved their feet… I am so grateful that I could share my gift of dance with such an inspiring crowd, and it is something that I will never forget. It felt so rewarding to see the joy on their faces, and I hope that I can do this again in the future. Props to my friend, Claire, who organized the event because it would not have happened if it wasn’t for her… Thank you for everything!

Have you had an eye-opening experience recently? What have you been up to this weekend? I hope that you have a fantastic week.

On The Edge: dance video

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Eccentric movements return to my memory as I flashback to the mixed repertoire showcase of May… I was not lying when I said that I would share a video of myself dancing, and I know that several of you really wanted to see “On The Edge.” I choreographed this contemporary ballet solo last season, and I am so thankful that I was able to snag a video of dress rehearsal. The last six seconds did get cut out, and the stage lighting made a small section a little blurry. Despite the minor complications with technology, I am still willing to perform for you! This is the first time that I have ever publicly released a video of my dancing. I am nowhere near perfect, but I thought it would be fun to switch things up a bit. Anyways, I hope you enjoy!

**Special thanks to my friend for taking the video! I really appreciate it!

Season 2018-19 Recap

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The 2018-19 season has come to a close, so I took some time to revisit all of my adventures from the past several months…

I remembered the exhilaration of dancing the Snow Queen pas de deux in The Nutcracker, and flutes of Act 2 came floating back to me from when I took the stage as a Mirliton. My heart became warm as I recalled performing the Sugar Plum Fairy variation for the seniors at the assisted living facility, and I smiled at the memory of pure joy on their faces. I recalled working with the choreographer of “Flight” and being part of its debut in January as well as the Balanchine-themed “Spiral.” Both of these creations were brought to three separate stages as we popped in and out of the city this year, and each experience was uniquely special. I shivered at the flashback of February and all of the stress that accompanied those long days of overtime at the studio. Alice in Wonderland definitely kept us on our toes as we raced against time to put the entire ballet together, but the performance was worth every moment. Shortly after, we dove into The Little Mermaid where we spent over 13 hours in the theater on a show day, and the contemporary repertoire marked the successful ending of this very busy season.

I am incredibly grateful for all of the opportunities that I had, and I cannot thank everyone enough for the tremendous amount of support through it all. I especially want to thank all of my followers for joining me this year, liking my posts, and leaving such positive comments. It means so much to know that my friends, family, and readers all believe in my ability to succeed, so THANK YOU!

How was your dance season? Do you have any questions for me? Any special post requests? Happy Summer!

Redemption

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I stood backstage staring at the vibrant feather that I was about to pin back into my hair, and I began to remember January’s performance…

This was our moment of redemption.


My bare feet slid across the stage, and my arms swayed to create abstract shapes that showcased the wonders of modern movement. It all happened so fast, and there wasn’t much time to overthink the steps that my body had instinctively began to do. I soared as high as I possibly could, and I felt like I was really able to live in the moment this time. Just like that, it all ended. Looking out into the audience, the six of us stood together and bowed our heads. The applause filled the theater, and our hearts filled with relief; we did it!

It was honor to perform with this incredibly talented group of dancers, and I am so thankful that I was chosen to be a part of this piece. It was such a wonderful opportunity, and I feel like I have grown a lot as an artist by discovering new ways to move. This piece has also inspired my own choreography because I was able to see how unusual movements develop into something truly amazing. Overall, I really loved this dance, and I hope that I have more opportunities to work with brilliant minds like the choreographer behind “Flight.” Thanks for everything!

Catching Up

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I hope that you all had a great week and a blessed Ash Wednesday! I apologize for my lack of posting/reading, but I should be able to get back on track now. Midterm week finally arrived which meant extra coffee and cram-study sessions for me… That pretty much explains why I have been absent for the past few days.

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I went to an early mass this year for Ash Wednesday because it was the only possibility for me, so I wore ashes on my forehead all day. I was shocked by the amount of confused faces that passed me in the hallways at school, and I actually had multiple people tell me that I had something on my head. It was an interesting day, but I was not embarrassed. I used these encounters as a way to educate others and help them understand the purpose of the ashes.

“We can feel a little funny with ashes on our foreheads, but for Catholics, that is how we mark the start of Lent. Ashes don’t say we’re holy. They say we’re sinners. They don’t say we’re perfect, only that we’re willing to try. They don’t say we’re models of religiosity, but they do say we belong.”

~Sr. Mary Ann Walsh, RSM

Next weekend, we will bring “Flight” back to the stage, so be sure to keep an eye out for that post! I also just want to take a second to thank all of my loyal readers who continuously read/comment on my posts. You are all so positive and encouraging, so I will not desert this internet space anytime soon (despite occasional inactivity). You are all amazing, and I cannot thank you enough for that. Now, go be awesome!

Photo Credits: Richard Jean-Louis