We had the good fortune of connecting with Justin Quandt and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Justin, putting aside the decision to work for yourself, what other decisions were critical to your success?
Oh! That’s a tough one! I find so many moments in life equally important that can contribute to where someone is at in the present day. I have to say, 1 huge decision I made, was to take a professional dance job that landed me in the magical city of Paris, France for 5 years. Living overseas for over 7 years of my professional career has taught me so many things about cultures, humans, the dance industry, life, and so much more. Being from a small town in Iowa, the chance to live there was absolutely wonderful. I could go on for days. It opened up my world.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
Dance is a way to move rhythmically to music. This is such an important tool for people of all ages. I love being able to teach people how to expressively move your body. Dance builds self-confidence, promotes a healthy lifestyle, creates accountability, improves critical thinking skills, creates a community, and the list goes on. The benefits of dance are just astounding. I reached the point of where I am today professionally by always working on my craft, learning, and keeping an open mind. I was absolutely in love with dance from as young as I can remember. I went to college at the University of Arizona and graduated with a BFA in dance. There, I would dance up to 10 hours a day. I then started my professional performing, teaching and judging career, which took me from the USA, Mexico, France, Australia, New Zealand, and all over the world. I resided in San Diego for about 3 years and knew that opening Fusion Dance Solana Beach is exactly what I wanted to do. After traveling the world performing and working in the dance industry, I felt so fortunate to end up in one of the absolute most beautiful cities in the world! San Diego!!!! I am now dedicated to “leading children to be successful in life through dance”. There are so many positive outcomes through dance, and it is definitely “More Than Just Great Dancing”.
Any great local spots you’d like to shoutout?
I love playing local tour guide. The “must sees” of San Diego are…Sunset Cliffs (morning or night). Solana Beach of course! I really enjoy spending the day at Mission Beach. I love bringing my nieces and nephews there. You can go on the rides, hang at the beach, and grab food! It’s a one stop shop! Balboa Park is a favorite of mine as well. Take the afternoon to walk around and enjoy. Having a picnic there is great too! La Jolla cove and the seals is a must see! There are just so many things to do in San Diego! One restaurant that I love is in Little Italy. Barbusa! Top notch food! This list barely scratches the surface of what San Diego offers!
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
My Mother deserves a huge shoutout in my story. Her dance studio (which is now run by my sister) is celebrating 50 years of being in business. She is not only an amazing dance teacher and business woman. She is my rock and is always there supporting me. My Father is definitely someone who is always there for me too and such a smart man. My husband Anthony deserves a huge shoutout too. We own Fusion Dance together. His drive, personality and passion speaks for itself. We absolutely love working together, and motivate each other daily to be our best. He’s pretty awesome! My sisters (Heidi and Heather) each own dance studios, and they are a huge inspiration to me daily. “More Than Just Great Dancing” which is an organization Fusion Dance belongs to run by Misty Lown. This group has guided us on a great path, especially during Covid-19. I have one more shoutout. The students and families of Fusion Dance Solana Beach. They are the absolute best! I like to call it our Fusion Family! We welcome everyone with open arms at Fusion Dance!
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