Nutty Weekend

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Just like that, Nutcracker 2019 has officially come to a close, but I would do anything to go back and relive my moment as the sugar plum fairy…

I couldn’t be more thankful for the opportunity to dance such an iconic role, and it was truly an honor to perform. My second show on Saturday night was better than I had ever expected, and I can’t recall time where I was that happy onstage before. I was overcome with joy, and I truly danced my heart out which doesn’t happen everyday. I am not sure how my dancing was physically, but I think that last show was one of the best ones I have ever done. If anything, it is definitely something that I will remember for a very long time.

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However, I am going to be honest and admit that it was not an easy weekend for me, and this Nutcracker certainly had its hiccups. I was in a lot of pain as my muscles kept seizing up in the middle of my dances, my Achilles was hurting, and I had a really bad cough that was a constant struggle. Also, slipping onstage during the pas de deux of my first show was far from the debut that I had envisioned.

Despite the circumstances, it truly was an incredible experience, and I am already missing that theater. It has been an amazing journey to get here, and I have made so many memories that will last an entire lifetime. Thank you to everyone who came out to support me and also everyone who encouraged me backstage. The entire cast danced beautifully, and I am so lucky to have shared that stage with such a talented group of artists. This was truly a dream, and I will always remember Nutcracker 2019…

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.

Summer Playlist: July 2019

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Hey, guys! Today, I thought it would be fun to share a few songs that I have been loving so far this month. I know that I posted a 4th of July playlist pretty recently, but I wanted to share some day-to-day tunes as well. Several of you have told me that you really enjoy these types of posts, so I am going to try to release a new playlist every month. Let’s see how long I can keep up with that commitment… I will definitely try my best, but I am making no promises because my life can get pretty chaotic during the year (as many of you already know.) Anyways, I hope that you enjoy listening and discover something new!

  • I Would by Coin
  • Keep You Close by Frenship
  • January by Verzache
  • Free & Lonely by X Ambassadors
  • Beautiful People by Ed Sheeran (feat. Khalid)
  • Careless by Vacation Manor
  • Fallin Down by Goo Goo Dolls
  • What Is Love by Chase Goehring

Which song is your favorite? What have you been listening to this month? Feel free to drop your own playlist in the comments section. 

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!

Giving Back

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I am so blessed and honored to know this incredibly talented group of friends that I performed with this morning… We thought the residents at the local senior living facility would appreciate a small Christmas show filled with live music and dances before the big day! I am so impressed with each and every one of these amazing artists, and it is truly a privilege to share that stage with them. I really hope to do this again sometime because it is so rewarding to give back to the community (especially during the holidays). Great job everyone, and thank you so much!

This Art Form

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It is so easy to forget why you love this art form when you sacrifice so much of your life inside of a studio with your feet cramping, muscles burning, and sweat dripping in your eyes. It is so easy to forget why you love this art form when you think about how many things you have missed out on by not living a “normal” life for a dream that you may never even reach. It is so easy to forget… until you step onto that stage to dance for hundreds of people and hear their applause… until you experience an injury that prevents you from being able to express yourself for weeks… until you are offered a job contract that allows you to do what you love and not sit in an office all day long… until an audience member warmly touches your shoulder after a performance and tells you how grateful he/she is for sharing your gift…

The fact is, I hear negativity every single day whether it is inside of my own head or from other people expressing their personal unhappiness. I have begun to realize that dance is a mental battle, and it is something that continuously challenges people both emotionally and physically. I have known so many people who have stopped fighting for this dream and have had thoughts of “what if I didn’t, where would I be now?” for the rest of their lives. Do not ever forget why you started dancing, and do not ever forget that magical moment that lit up your young eyes when you discovered it for the very first time. Always remember the power that dance has to heal and change people’s lives, and never allow your current emotions to put out the flame that burns deep within your soul. Remain true to yourself, and have faith through it all.

No matter how defeated you may feel at times, never forget this art form… It is part of you. It IS you… Do you really want to let it all go?


I know that this post was significantly longer than my typical posts, but I just felt like the world needed to read this because these words have been lingering in my head for quite some time now. Too many people in my life have incredible talent, but they are quickly loosing their passion; I don’t ever want that to happen to me.

Photo credits: Richard Jean-Louis

Share Your Talent

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“You guys were beautiful. This made me feel young again. Thank you!”

I had the most amazing time performing for the residents at the assisted living facility this morning. It warmed my heart to bring the arts back into the lives of these seniors, and I can’t tell you how rewarding it was to see the smiles on their faces. I will absolutely do this again, and I highly encourage YOU to share your talent, hobby, or joy with your local community. No matter how small and simple it may seem, people will appreciate it more than you will ever know…

“You are what you make yourself to be”

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Have you been told this before? It wasn’t until just recently that I really started trying to understand the meaning behind these wise words…

Now that I took time to think about this, I know that you are the outcome of your hard work and effort. You may not have natural born talent, but that doesn’t define your achievements and how far you can go in life. Honestly, you can spend days feeling sorry for yourself because you feel like you aren’t as talented as the people around you, but that isn’t going to do anything other than break you down. The truth is, if you want something, you must work for it and put in all that you have to achieve it. Nobody else around you really matters, and how fast they improve has nothing to do with yourself. As my parents have always told me, ‘The only person that you should try to be better than is the person you were yesterday’ (unknown) … You are what you MAKE yourself, so make yourself great! 🙂

(Title quote by Lou Holtz)