How did you start dancing?
I started dancing at the age of 4 in my hometown of Baltimore, Maryland. I signed up with another boy in the neighborhood after our parent’s saw how much we enjoyed dancing around the house to music. I started taking jazz and tap, but ultimately chose ballet as my career path after attending The Baltimore School for the Arts for high school. I also trained at The School of American Ballet in the Lincoln Center which further cemented the idea that ballet was the direction I wanted to take my career.
What is your favorite Ballet Beautiful workout move?
My favorite Ballet Beautiful exercise is anything that works on my abs/strengthens my core. A strong core is the basis of every movement we do, so there are more benefits to having a strong core than just looks. Even being a dancer, I’ve gained a stronger sense of acknowledgement towards my core from Ballet Beautiful.
What is your top fitness tip?
Stretch, Stretch, STRETCH! Stretching is key. Almost everyone either forgets or doesn’t take time to stretch pre workout when your body needs to be warmed up and post workout when your body needs to repair the muscles from your workout. Stretching can help prevent injuries and it can be very calming after an intense session.
What is your best healthy living tip?
Drink lots and lots of water! Water is so important especially when working out. When you work out you must consume more water than usual because your body is sweating out toxins so you must rehydrate to prevent muscle cramping. Also I feel like when I drink lots of water my skin glows more naturally. I try to drink 8-10 glasses of water a day, always one when I wake up and one before I go to sleep.
What is your favorite dance memory?
I’ve been very lucky to have the career in dance that I’ve had and I’m super grateful for everything I’ve accomplished. There have been so many memories I’ll always remember, so it’s hard to narrow it down to one. A few special highlights are when I made my debut on Broadway in Billy Elliot, performed in West Side Story at The Chatelet in Paris and in London at Sadler Wells, and danced the role of Waltz Boy in Serenade.
When I was training at The School of American Ballet I was able to go to the ballet almost every night when New York City Ballet was in season, so the choreography of George Balanchine will always have a soft place in my heart. My favorite ballet of his would have to be Serenade. Everything about it is so beautiful – the music, the stories behind some of the choreography, the simplicity of the costumes. Serenade always takes my breathe away every time I see it performed.
Favorite go-to healthy food?
My favorite go-to healthy food is The Bliss Bowl at Bliss Cafe in Williamsburg. It’s basically a ton of steamed vegetables, brown rice, black beans, tempeh and a delicious lemon tahini miso dressing.
When I’m on the run, which is pretty much everyday for me, I rely a lot on snacks – like a handful of raw almonds or cashews, apples, bananas or plain greek yogurt with a bit of honey.
What is your favorite indulgence or treat?
I actually have an incredible sweet tooth. My favorite indulgence/weakness is ice cream. Living in NYC there are so many amazing ice cream and frozen yogurt places where I can satisfy my craving 24/7. Some of my favorites are Yogurtland, 16 Handles, Van Leeuwin and DF Mavens.
Do you have a favorite app that makes your life easier?
My favorite app to make life easier would definitely be Google maps. I use it pretty much everyday. I have a great sense of NYC, but sometimes you can get turned around and need a bit of assistance.
Something interesting about yourself we wouldn’t expect?
I’m super close with my mom. We talk multiple times a day on the phone with random texts in between. She is always the first person I call when anything good or bad happens in my life. Like the saying goes – Mom always knows best.
When you’re not dancing, we can find you…
Walking around NYC. One of my favorite things to do is take long walks around the city with friends or alone. The city is always changing and I love stumbling upon a new restaurant or shop. Since I am so active my body needs downtime as well. I really like to kick my legs up and read a book. One of my resolutions this year is to try and finish one book a month, and so far I’m still on track!