What would you say is your greatest talent or skill? How have you developed and demonstrated that talent over time?
When the glorious makeup conceals my nerdy look, when the shiny spotlight embraces my entire body, and when I dance with my hair floating in midair, I turn into a different person.
Originally an amateur who loved to imitate dances in music videos, I was first taught jazz dance by a senior at the street dancing club in school. Thanks to my talent in memorization and coordination, I stood out from club members and obtained various opportunities to perform on stages. Then, my stage extended from the small mirror to Christmas parties, and from shows in my school and community to national competitions. After noticing me in a routine practice of dancing, a coach selected me as one of the twelve to compete in the National Cheerleading Contest. The “devil training” I received during preparation of this competition enhanced my muscular strength and flexibility, and better prepared me as a capable dancer.
Taking advantage of those opportunities, I had grown to be a confident performer who can teach others and even choreograph. I also started to try different types of dances such as contemporaries.
Then, I continued to refresh my definition of dancing beyond a personal skill to a means through which I could communicate with and even influence others. Noticing the dull life of the retired people in my community, I decided to teach them to dance. My grandma and five of her friends were my first focus group of aerobic dancing. This small group eventually expanded into a big team of almost thirty people. Alongside the Gan River near my home, those retired people were rejuvenated and my passion for dancing was continuously ignited.
I have danced in front of the mirror in the school gym, on the glorious stages, along the river with the elders, and even on the gravels lighted by bonfire in Tanzania. I envision the next place for me to spark as a dancer to be the campus of University of California.