What is your hometown?
Long Beach, California
What’s the story of how you became a dancer and teacher?
When I was in middle school my older brother convinced me to go with him to watch his girlfriend perform in a dance show. It was my first time watching a live dance performance and I was hooked! I enrolled in dance classes the next day and never looked back.
What impact has dance had on your life?
Dance provides an amazing outlet for all the crazy things life can throw at you. It’s such a gift to be able to focus on music and movement and get lost in the moment! Dance has also made me realize how important it is to surround your life with things you are passionate about – I originally went to UCLA for Economics and was on the path to a desk job but always felt myself being pulled back towards dance instead. Eventually, I realized if dance was what I felt passionate about then that was all that mattered.
Why did you start teaching dance?
The high school I attended had an amazing dance program (pretty much all the memories I have from high school are in the dance room) and I was fortunate enough to consider the head teacher a friend and an amazing mentor. After I graduated she offered me the opportunity to come back and teach for the same program and I jumped at the chance. I realized right away how natural I felt teaching and continued to grow and learn through the years. Eventually, I transitioned into teaching at other great schools and studios (like TDA!) and picked up a minor in Visual and Performing Art Education, but that high school program will always have a special place in my heart.
What are you passionate about outside dance?
My Jack Russell Terrier puppy and wine tasting 🙂
What was the defining moment when you decided to pursue dance as a career?
Originally I went to college thinking I wouldn’t keep dancing. I was at UCLA for about 2 months before I realized I was bored out of my mind without dance and how crazy I was for thinking I wouldn’t miss such a big part of my life. Right after that, I realized I needed to continue to pursue dance and joined a contemporary dance company as well as increased my teaching hours. Now I tend to do more teaching than dancing (there are not enough hours in the day!) but it will hopefully always be a part of my career.
If you weren’t a dancer and teacher, what do you think you would be doing now?
Probably Econ things like consumer research or become a stay-at-home puppy mom.
What question do you wish students would ask sooner rather than later?
“What can I be doing outside of class to improve?”
Do you have a favorite quote you like to tell your students?
You can’t get better if you don’t try!
In your opinion, what makes dance such a great activity and art form?
Dance is a great activity because it requires students to be so well rounded in ways that improve other areas of their lives. Dance requires focus, memory, perseverance, creativity, strength, flexibility, teamwork, cooperation, organization – the list goes on! All of these skills combine in a beautiful way to make better dancers and better human beings.
What locations and classes do you teach?
Jazz, Ballet, and Lyrical for Minis, Jrs, and 10+ as well as Twinkle 2-3, 3-4, and 4-5 in Livermore, San Ramon, and Pleasanton.