Alexa Anderson: A Dancing Dream

The art form of dance has graced the Earth for centuries, allowing individuals to express emotion, passion, feelings, and whatever they could not speak through movement. It is an extraordinary form of expression and talent, which is why I am so pleased to now feature it on this site.

Alexa Anderson 14

And who better to feature than Alexa Anderson, a 21 year old Californian. Ms. Anderson has had her fair share of experience in dance, started at a spry, young age. From her passion grew many years of wonderful performances, ones that have taken her to the stages of So You Think You Can Dance, the XFactor, America’s Got Talent, and so many more. She is truly an amazing talent, one that I find to be the perfect feature to welcome Dance to the site.

With such an impressive resume, it would seem as though she must have had years of training, starting from an early age. What was Ms. Anderson’s dance history like? “I started dancing when I was 12. My mom enrolled me in a class at a studio nearby and I remember thinking to myself that I was the absolute worse one in the room, but I loved it. I had my mom sign me up for a full schedule the next year and  then things took off from there. Life was hectic between school and my dance training every week night. I would wake up, go to school, get dropped off at the studio, train for about 4 hrs, and then do homework before I slept and repeated the whole thing. On top of that, I took my academics really seriously and eventually started touring with a convention on the weekends. I think I was always just different levels of exhausted but my family was supportive and I was completely in love with it. Arizona was a great place to grow up dancing. I was always surrounded by so much beautiful talent and my instructor always gave me a lot of freedom and encouragement to explore my own style. I felt comfortable developing my own original way of doing things. It helped me become the weirdo I am today.”

“Weirdo” or not, she certainly blossomed into a wonderful, talented young woman. Her career shortly skyrocketed after SYTYCD, but what was her career before the hit television show? “Before going on the show I had danced in an off broadway show in NYC and then moved to Los Angeles directly after. I was mostly auditioning a lot and taking classes. I did random gigs here and there. I danced on Xfactor, American Idol, and did some commercials. I also landed a promo tour for Kanye West and was a part of a contemporary company called Shaping Sound.”

Anyone that has viewed SYTYCD knows the complete and utter stress the dancers are put under. How was her individual experience on the show? “I feel like anybody who has auditioned for SYTYCD will tell you that the process is really stressful. The dancing is hard on the body, but all the interviews and the pressure to perform is hard on the psyche. I had been to a lot of auditions and was pretty used to that atmosphere of having to learn choreography quickly and deliver, but the show was a completely different ball game. I wasn’t used to anybody being concerned about my personality. I wound up learning a lot about myself and how to deal with stress and nerves. It was also really good exposure.”

And of course, after her run on the show, she was given the opportunites to perform at many other venues. What were some of the incredible experiences she was involved in? “Since SYTYCD, I’ve been on television shows like Xfactor, Americas Got Talent, Dancing With the Stars, All The Right Moves,The Teen Choice Awards, and Glee. I’ve performed with artists like Queen Latifah, Colbie Caillat, Paramore, The Wanted, Icona Pop, Havana Brown, and Demi Lovato. I’ve also toured with Shaping Sound and traveled choreographing and teaching dance and yoga. I’ve learned that its important to be smart, professional, and always bring a great energy. People want to work with dancers who are not only talented and on top of it, but also a pleasure to be around.”

With such an incredible career and future ahead of her, her life will forever be entwined with the art form. With it being such a large part of her life, it must be her one, true passion. “Dance means the world to me. Its my love. It makes me happy everyday. I love being athletic and I love music so dance is perfect in my eyes. I love that its so difficult and I think it show cases the best of people (strength, beauty, artistry, vulnerability). There’s a lot to be learned from being a dancer. I think growing up doing something that requires so much commitment teaches a lot about work ethic. I also think that dancing encourages students to explore their creative mind and develop a strong presence and point of view as a human in general.”

An accomplished dancer, such as herself, is an inspiration to young dancers everywhere. What is her advice to them, the knowledge she can share? “I would say to not only work hard, but work smart. Try to fully digest what an instructor is giving you as opposed to always reverting to old habits and only utilizing what you know makes you look good. Every class should be an exploration and an opportunity to try something outside your comfort zone. Also, don’t feel the need to over produce when you’re doing movement you feel uncomfortable with. Feel confident and comfortable showing the movement on your own body while you continue to work. Come to the floor with an optimistic self-assured attitude. Know that you’ve worked hard and have something to offer. I truly believe that an audience is drawn to a dancer because of their energy and intention; not just a really cool dance move or precisely how every step is being executed.”

Well, it certainly was a pleasure in hearing the incredible accomplishments she has met through her career, especially still being so young. The world is ahead of Ms. Anderson, a world, I’m sure of, that will be so gracious to such a talented individual.