Final Performances of 2018

As 2018 winds down, the curtain just closed on my last performance of 2018. I finished out the year with my one company’s annual Nutcracker Tea – an abbreviated version of Act II of the full-length Nutcracker. Guests are invited to eat sweets and pastries as they drink tea and coffee and watch the main company and the student company perform. It was so much fun, and I enjoy performing the Nutcracker for all of it’s magic and for the beautiful music.

This tea is most suitable for young kids, as we also have “fairy makeovers” available to them before the show, and they have the option to sit up front and close at the children’s seating right in front of the black box stage. Their eyes are usually so excited and curious as they watch everyone perform. It’s a wonderful feeling knowing you’re inspiring young kids, and I imagine this is similar to what people working at Disney feel like. I would still love to work for the Disney company one day. 

Other than Nutcracker, I performed in the gala for another company as their season opener on December 1. It was more of a wine and dine event for donors and patrons, but we performed a short, groovy dance for the attendees which was located at a really cute NYC dinner theater on West 72nd street. Lady Gaga apparently performed at this same theater before she became super famous, so it was kind of cool to think about that while having my own experience at the venue.

I have a few performances lined up for the new year already, as well as some auditions!! I’ll be performing a solo I’m choreographing at a showcase in March (which will be my first solo EVER!!), and I think we are going to be rehearsing for a full-length Cinderella ballet for May/June. The second week of January, I also have auditions for Disney World Orlando, and Royal Caribbean. They are open calls, so I’m expecting to be waiting a while as there are usually 400-600 people who show up for open calls. I will be re-auditioning for the Rockettes’ Summer Program in January or February as well, and hopefully more opportunities will be available soon. I can’t wait!

Related: Rockettes Mini Intensive – I Was Invited!

Voices of Dance Festival  The Tank Theater NYC
September 2018

2018 was filled with many successes, adventures, leaps of faith, and new experiences. Although checkered by heart break and some failure, I’d say for what it was, I made 2018 the best I possibly could given my circumstances. I am looking forward to burying 2018 in the past, and moving forward into 2019 happier, healthier, stronger, and way more excited for the future.

xoxo

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October Blessings – Reflection

Hi loves!

Remember a while back I mentioned October was going to be a really exciting month?! WELL – exciting doesn’t even scratch the surface. It was a whirlwind to say the least, and here is a rundown of all the amazing things I did and saw this past month!

1. Long2 Dance Company Rehearsals

I began rehearsing with Vanessa Long’s trainee company, and it has been so much fun! I enjoy Vanessa and our other director Zoe, and I feel like we have a strong group of women in our ensemble. Wednesday’s are CRAZY for me teaching fitness in the morning, running to LOWER MANHATTAN for three hours of rehearsal, and then running back to teach dance at night afterwards, but really either way, I end my Wednesdays fulfilled and excited for what’s to come – even though my body usually feels like it is on the verge of collapse. Peep the company sweatshirt 😉

Related: My First NYC Dance Job Starts this Fall!! (2018)

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2. My first month as a Certified Xtend Barre Instructor/TRX Training

October was also my first full month as a certified and paid Xtend Barre instructor! I taught a month full of my own classes, taught my first 75 minute barre camp, AND I was trained in a new class – Xtend Suspend (TRX). I’ve been preparing my Xtend TRX workout, and hopefully by December will be teaching the TRX classes at the studio as well! I really love my job as a fitness instructor, and my body has never been stronger.

Related: I am Officially an Xtend Barre Instructor!

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3. Dorrance Dance Event

Over the summer while I was attending ADF, I met a choreographer I LOVE – Michelle Dorrance! I hung out with her in her dressing room after a show she performed in, and she invited me to an INVITE-ONLY event being held in NYC sometime in October. It was so hush-hush, that she couldn’t tell me what was going to happen, and only told me I had to email her assistant and tell her Michelle invited me to be on the list to get in. This was back in July when I met her, and I went to that event on October 30. It turns out it was a private viewing of a piece they debuted in 2017 as a rehearsal for their season Gala happening the next day (Oct. 31)! It was incredible, and was held in the rotunda at the Guggenheim on the upper east side. I was surrounded by lots of dancers, artists, and dance patrons, so to be invited to something like this was truly a brilliant experience.

Related: I’m Back and Ready to MOVE!

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4. Halloween Activities

I met some pretty awesome people this month at different parties and events themed around Halloween. It is my favorite holiday, and my favorite season to be spooky, so I had a lot of fun dressing up and creating characters for myself. I also had a lot of fun being able to party with my good friends and let loose a little after so much hustling and working! Since I already posted a picture of my fortune teller makeup, I’ll show you some galaxy makeup I attempted to do for a party I went to with my best friend.

PS: That septum piercing in the photo below is fake 😉

Related: Evil (Mis)Fortune Teller Halloween Makeup!

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5. MY NEW PIERCINGS

Okay so number five is one of the BEST parts of October! I had two new piercings installed, and I am OBSSESSED WITH THEM! I love them so much to the point where I am actually going to make a whole post about them! 🙂 The post should be up sometime this week! I won’t tell you what I had done (it’s a surprise), but I will tell you I did a LOT of research before I had it done. And I feel like if I make a post or two about my experience, it might help someone else who is contemplating going for it too! Pictures are to come with the post, so stay tuned 🙂

This October had to be the best and busiest I’ve ever experienced. Between running to and from NYC, to modifying my body, to furthering my education and career; this month has been productive and exciting. I am so thrilled to finish out 2018 strong. And I’m SO ready for a new beginning with 2019.

Thanks for reading, xoxo

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November Fall Photos

Hi beauties!

Yesterday the foliage in NJ hit it’s peak! My best friend and I made sure we took advantage of the fall aesthetics before winter creeps upon us with a fun photoshoot. By next weekend, all of the beautiful golden and red leaves will have fallen off the trees and I will have to stare at barren forestry for the next 6 months. UGH. As the leaves die they are beautiful, but once they have fallen and are actually dead, everything turns gray for many months and it is so dreadful. And this daylight savings nonsense has me feeling some type of way with it being 5:30pm and PITCH DARK outside. Either way – I really like the vibe from all of these photos!

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My best friend and I go out multiple times a year and take fun photos of each other! It’s something we’ve always done and always have fun doing. I just wanted to share some of the images with you. I feel very introspective/introverted lately in the sense of not sharing my feelings with people as I figure out my own way to process what I need to. These images reflect those sentiments, and I decided to work a lot with my hands to abstract how I’ve been feeling.

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Confused, random, sleepy, happy, feminine, and grungy are all words I would use to describe my current emotional state and these photographs. Many of my most favorite images from these were taken when I wasn’t trying to make anything particularly beautiful, and it’s really amazing to see what my best friend decided to capture – purposefully and accidentally – and see what she thought was beautiful about these moments.

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We traveled to a nearby farm near rolling mountains and fields of dead corn stalks as one of our backdrops. There is something about setting sunlight which makes everything seem angelic and feel okay.

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I am so fortunate to have such an amazing best friend. Her name is Kelsie, and if you get a chance definitely check out her photography Instagram. It is at the handle @kdeckerpics. She is a phenomenal lady and artist!

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I hope you like these images because they bring me some joy! They remind me of all of the onlookers who gave us funny looks or car honks from where we were taking photos, and all of the funny moments trying to create a cool image.

Enjoy the rest of your Sunday babes. Thanks for reading.

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HorrorCon Fall 2018 – Atlantic City, NJ

HAPPY AUTUMN EVERYONE!

I had such an amazing week last week – I will tell you all more information once some paperwork is finalized, however, I ended my amazing week by going to Atlantic City with my two good friends for the fall NJ Horror Convention!

This convention happens twice a year, and this season it was held at the Showboat hotel in A.C. My friends and I stayed at the Showboat, and had a super fun 36 hours running around Atlantic City!

We arrived at the hotel at midnight on what was technically Saturday morning (and technically the first day of fall). We checked in, went to our room, freshened up, and then took a Lyft to Bally’s for an Emo Night Brooklyn event! Emo Night Brooklyn is a DJ show where the DJ plays all pop-punk, alternative, and emo music ranging from the early 2000s to pop punk hits from today! It was held in the Wild Wild West casino in the Ballys resort. I’ve been wanting to go to an Emo Night Brooklyn event for a few months now, so to do it with my two good friends was special! I also ran into some friends from high school while I was there, which was awesome. We didn’t arrive back to our hotel until 3:30am!

Saturday we woke up, went for lunch in the hotel, and then went into the convention! HorrorCon has all types of horror-inspired small businesses and vendors come set up tables to sell products, and there was an independent horror film festival going on as well. In addition, there were so many actors and actresses/celebrity icons at this event! Cassandra Peterson (who was the original Elvira!) was the headlining personality at this convention, in addition to Dee Snider (Twisted Sister), Bam Margera (MTV’s “Jackass”), and Linda Blair (from the Exorcist!). Tony Moran, the man who originally played Michael Myer’s in “Halloween” was there, along with many others.

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I picked up a few awesome items from this convention! If I hadn’t lost $65 gambling, I would have probably bought more fun things! But when in Rome, you do as the Romans, am I right? 🙂 Anyway, here are the awesome items I bought!

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My first and FAVORITE purchase is this print made by artist Scott Straka. He is a Philadelphia-based artist, and was selling his AMAZING portraits for an amazing price. I was drawn to his table for a portrait he did of Tate Langdon (Evan Peter’s character from season 1 of American Horror Story). It was an incredible drawing, but when I started looking at the other available prints, I FELL IN LOVE with this Bride of Frankenstein portrait. It gives me all of the old-Hollywood glam-gore vibes, and looks super pretty on my bedroom wall! This was definitely the best find while I was there.

Check out Scott Straka’s store if you want dope prints like this for your home! https://scottstrakaart.storenvy.com/

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My next purchase was this tee-shirt advertising for Poisonous Pinups. Poisonous Pinups is an alternative pin-up model magazine (very similar to Suicide Girls if you are familiar with them), and I really liked their logo! The sticker of the red-haired monster/thing is also featured on the back of the shirt printed much larger, and it gives me all the badass lady boss vibes. This magazine is based in NJ, so it was cool to support this small business.

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This pin has to be one of the coolest I’ve ever seen, and I was SO excited to buy it. This is from a company called Kneehigh Horror, and the owner makes and sells enamel pins from very niche horror films. This lovely lady pin is the Salma Hayek character Satanico Pandemonium from Quentin Tarantino’s movie “From Dusk Til Dawn”. Her character does a burlesque dance with this cool headdress and a python(!!), so naturally, I wanted this to display on my denim jacket!

You should definitely check out his shop if you’re interested in some niche and hard-to-find pins based on different horror series. https://www.etsy.com/shop/KneehighHorror

If you couldn’t tell, I had a theme to all of my purchases: badass ladies!

Anyway, later in the night I went out with my two friends, and we went to the new Hard Rock hotel for some dinner, drinks, and gambling! We even went to the Sugar Factory (which was my first time!), where we ordered a special 60 ounce watermelon mojito drink, topped off with sour watermelon gummy candies, and raspberry gummies inside the glass! It was delicious, and something I’ve always wanted to do!

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None of us won any money unfortunately, but after a few hours out, we ended up going back to our hotel and talking until the wee hours of the morning.

This trip was definitely one I will always remember. It is such an empowering feeling to be able to geek out with my two friends who are also super into horror/Halloween/alternative styles, and be comfortable being the real Julia for the first time in what seems like my entire life. Since April, I’ve been trying new things and having all types of new experiences! Not only have I been going places I’ve always wanted to go, I’ve also been tapping into all of my interests, including those I haven’t thought to tap into in years. It is so weird to me how I never allowed myself to step outside of my comfort zone and be my true authentic self. Weekends like this help me realize all parts of me make me a badass boss lady (just like my Bride of Frankenstein and my Salma Hayek pin).

I hope you enjoyed this post, and if you’re in NJ/NY/PA, you should definitely consider attending this convention if you can make it! There will be another one in the spring, but I do not know yet where it will be. I’m not sure if I will attend the spring one, but it will be fun to make this convention trip an annual fall occurrence with my friends!

Xoxo Happy Autumn loves!

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I’m Back and Ready to MOVE!

Hi everyone!

WOW, the American Dance Festival was a WHIRLWIND! I cannot fully express in words how busy I was, and how saturated I am right now with everything I was exposed to. ADF was one of the very best decisions I ever made, and I can’t believe all of the connections I made, experiences I had, and dances I danced.

There were too many great moments to pick a favorite! But let me just say the community ADF creates cannot be found anywhere else. Everyone is free to be 100% themselves, everyone is encouraging, and everyone is there to connect with each other through dance. Durham, North Carolina is the perfect city for the festival to be located in too. This is because Durham is filled with so many artists, dancers, and musicians, and everyone is so open to collaborating to make something beautiful.

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Photography by: Tim Lytvinenko

Some of my favorite performances I watched included the ADF Alumni concert, Rosie Herrara Dance Theater, Kyle Abraham A.I.M., and Michelle Dorrance’s tap solo in the Wondrous Women Concert. In addition to dancing full time, I was working in the Performances office of the festival assisting the staff with picking up and taking care of visiting dance company needs! I met so many amazing performers and choreographers, and even was invited to some exclusive invite-only events by some of the choreographers (I can’t share information on these things now, but in the fall when they happen I will be able to post about them! So exciting!).

While I was there, I also collaborated with a Raleigh-based artist named Tim Lytvinenko. He needed a model for a project series he is working on (his work is in the Contemporary Art Museum of Raleigh BY THE WAY), and I needed dance photos. So we exchanged photo shoots which was super fun! He is going to turn one of the photos he made of me into a piece of art which can hopefully be in his museum installation one day. Here is one of his favorites.

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Photography by: Tim Lytvinenko

Side note: This photo reminds me a lot of the movie DVD cover of Across the Universe. Do you all know that movie? It is a movie musical telling a story through the songs of the Beatles. It’s amazing, and if you haven’t seen it, after you’re done reading please go watch it.

Anyway, I was able to perform in student choreography concerts, visit the Nasher Museum of Art, watch dance films, take masterclasses, and push my body to new limits. Since I’ve been home, I’ve been fortunate because this week the company I dance for is performing in a summer arts festival in New York, and we have been rehearsing and creating all week 🙂 It is nice to keep moving and not be stuck home sedentary after 6 weeks of nonstop movement at ADF. I have some auditions and fun adventures in NYC coming up next week and in August too! There is no time rest it seems, but I don’t mind pushing my body this much if it means I can dance!

There is so much going on, and all of it is amazing! I can’t wait to share more with you!

Thank you for reading – it’s so nice to be back!

Xoxo

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