14 year old dancer Simone Marmol hails from Orlando, Fl. We have posted her beautiful pictures captured by photographer Heather Elizabeth Lehman of Lisbet Photography plenty of times on our Instagram. Simone was recently selected to study at the prestigious Dance Theatre of Harlem Summer Dance Intensive. Check out her interview with PrettyBrownDancers.com
When did you start dancing?
I started dancing when I was two years old, but I began to take it seriously when I was around ten.
Tell us About Your First Dance Performance.
I don’t remember much about my first dance performance since I was only three, but I do remember that it took place on a small, rolled in stage in a mall. There was only a small crowd, and it was only my class of toddlers performing, but I do remember loving being in my red tutu with roses on it.
Tell Us About Your Dancing Techniques.
My main focus is on classical ballet in the Vaganova method. I have also been fortunate enough to study Horton modern and some contemporary dance.
What other dancers and performers do you like?
I love to watch many dancers that attend Dance Theatre of Harlem such as Ingrid Silva, Alison Stroming, Francis Lawrence, Nicholas Rose and Da’Von Daone. I also enjoy watching Misty Copeland and Michaela DePrince, Adiarys Almeida and Jeffrey Cirio. I really like to watch my friends perform too.
What was the best advice you have received about dance?
Some of the best advice I’ve received about dance is that hard work always pays off and never compare or try to be better than anyone else; only try to be better than you are now.
How does it feel to know that you will be studying at the prestigious Dance Theatre of Harlem Summer Dance Intensive? What are your expectations?
Dance Theatre of Harlem is an amazing dance school, and I feel so honored to be attending their summer intensive. All of their dancers have so much talent! I know there is a lot to learn from them. I am very excited because this will be my first time doing something like this, so I’m not quite sure what it will be like. I am expecting to learn so much and to leave a better dancer than I was before.
Who are your role models and why?
One of my role models is Ms.Virginia Johnson. She has had such a long career in dance and probably knows more about the industry than many people in the world since she has devoted so much time to performing and teaching. Another roll model I have is Dawn Branch, my modern instructor. I have trained with her for four years. After I began working with her, I grew so much. She is an amazing teacher and choreographer and has helped me in so many ways to become a better dancer. She always pushes me to do my best, and I would never have made it to where I am now if it weren’t for her.
What would you do if you were granted three dance-related wishes?
If I were granted three dance-related wishes, my first wish would be better flexibility especially in my arches.
My second wish would be an everlasting supply of leotards and pointe shoes.
My third wish would be to have more performance opportunities.
What advice do you have for young girls starting out in dance?
My advice for young girls starting out in dance would be that dance is difficult, and it takes a lot of hard work. Never give up, because there is always someone looking up to you. You can be a role model no matter how old you are. Even dancers much older can be inspired and motivated by you, so keep trying your best. Also, you have to be very patient in dance. Improving your technique, flexibility, stamina or anything in dance takes a long time. If you want to get better, you have to work harder. Nobody gets their splits overnight. You have to work on it every day. It is the same with everything else. You have to work very hard in order to improve. It may take a long time, but eventually it will come. I spent seven years preparing to dance in pointe shoes before I actually was allowed to put them on. So know that no matter how long it takes or how much you have to work for it, nothing is impossible and you can do anything you put your mind to as long as you never stop trying your best.