We had the good fortune of connecting with Michelle Solis and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Michelle, how do you think about risk?
Once I became a dreamer I became a risk taker. But before I was a dreamer I was a worrier and didn’t enjoy the thought of taking leaps of faith. Now, I depend on those leaps and the trust I have in myself. I would not be where I am right now without the leaps I’ve taken. Before I decided to dance professionally I studied writing simply because I was fearful of the dance industry simply because it is so difficult to succeed. To be a paid dancer isn’t impossible but the thought of failing was so daunting to me that I shyed away and stuck with a career I knew I could be inevitably hired. Once I discovered how much I loved dance I realized I couldn’t do anything else in my life and I wouldn’t wanna do anything else in my life besides dancing. My epiphany allowed me to accomplished my dreams and accomplish goals I was too scared to even reach for. Now I’m grabbing it all without any regret.

Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I’ve trained professionally my whole life. When I was featured of SD Voyager previously I discussed how my hip surgery was a huge obstacle for me to overcome. Being a dancer my obstacles were not on mentally difficult but physically painful Gaining the strength in my hip and having the ability to stand up and walk was not instant. From the moment I first put weight on that side and falling to doing 5 turns on that leg, there were burns under my armpits from the crutches, the stretching pains to gain my flexibility back, the aching in my bones, the weakness in my joints, and so much more. Art is pain, but it is completely worth it. I also had an ankle surgery last year but I have recovered since then. These mental challenges I think were even more painful. Mental health was something I always struggled with. I couldn’t even begin to dive in without getting lost in the angst but a few things that really made me go insane was confidence issues, body dysmorphia, classism, hopelesness, jealousy, fear, and so much more. Being an artist the feelings are so powerful, that this one art form is so special and beautiful to me it can make me feel such powerful emotions. It is amazing despite the challenges It can bring, because it is worth it. The powerful emotions are what make me so passionate. I feel dance in my soul as well as in my toes. I think what’s most special about it is how I am free. I am free. I have spent so much time studying dance technique as well as how it feels to dance when no one is watching in my room. You just mix the two. The spirit and the movement. When I dance my spirit shines though, and that what people love to see. A spirit, A soul, A rhythm, An artist, no one wants to see a person doing steps. No one wants to see someone do some movement without any feeling. Without that look in your eyes, without the fire burning inside. One of the biggest lessons I’ve learned: work ethic is everything, failure leads to success, trust yourself, and to dream bigger and bigger I want the world to know my dancing and my name and who I am because I am just another person who has faced mental and physical obstacles but I also want to show what a special gift of movement it has given me. I was be hope for those were in the same position I was in. That these dreams are real. That actually, there are no such thing as dreams, just goals.

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I would love to dedicate this article to my supporting parents and dance mentors. As well as everyone that has taken the time and has showed me support. In this world 80% of the people watching you will feel envy, jealousy, or mere confusion because they don’t understand the art form we can create, but the 20% means the world to me.

Instagram: starringangelica
Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCuc4H0TFDgFgfvCV34p-8rA

Image Credits
YAGP vam productions chullett_ballet

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