What drew you to KU?
I have lived here my entire life, and I always knew when I was older I was going to go to KU. I was always a Jayhawk!
When did you know you wanted to pursue dance?
I knew I wanted to pursue dance when I was probably 12 years old. I would watch music videos and only watched the dancers in the background. I would tell my mom “that’s what I want to do when I’m older.”
Which of your performances/pieces has had a profound impact on you or others?
The piece I was involved with last semester, which was choreographed by Andie Stitt. It was a fusion piece between tap and hip hop. All of my family and friends LOVED it, and so did I. I had never done something like that before!
How do the arts impact your daily life outside of the studio?
Right now, I am a dance teacher at Dance Gallery here in Lawrence. I teach there almost everyday, and I am heavily involved with their competition team. I love teaching them tricks and things I have learned through the KU Dance Department.
Who is your biggest inspiration? Personally or professionally?
I would say my biggest inspiration is Julianne Hough. She is a professional dancer and has also done many things with acting. She came from a small town as well, which is why I can relate to her! She has been someone I aspire to be like for a long time.
What is your creative process like?
My creative process is listening to music and improv-ing to it, figuring out what bits and pieces I liked, and going from there on. Music is something that really drives my art.
What message do you hope to communicate through dance?
Passion. I love to dance, and when I perform people can see that. I have worked vigorously on my craft, and I love being able to share that with others.
What advice would you give to people thinking about studying dance in college?
Go for it! If something is your passion you follow it until the end. There are tons of jobs you can follow through with a dance major, even if you don’t want to be a professional dancer!
How do you take care of your body or unwind after an especially difficult day of rehearsals?
After a long night of rehearsals I make sure to go home and stretch, and then I usually watch a movie before I go to bed.
Why do you think the arts are important?
The arts allow students to be able to express a creative side of themselves that they may have not known before, and you never know where that could take them!
If you could invite five people to a dinner party, living or deceased, who would you invite?
I would invite Bruno Mars, Ellen DeGeneres, Chelsea Handler, Khloe Kardashian and Beyonce.
What would be the theme song for your life?
“Formation” by Beyonce