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Marissa

Marissa
2nd Season
Mount Holly, NC
The American Musical and Dramatic Academy
Dance Instructor

COLLEGE & DEGREE: Studied as a Dance Theatre Major at The American Musical and Dramatic Academy

OCCUPATION: Dance Instructor/Choreographer

FAVORITES:

Dallas Cowboys: Current: CeeDee Lamb Former: Roger Staubach and Emmitt Smith
Season of the Year: Christmas time is my absolute favorite!!!
High School Teacher:
My beloved theatre teacher, Mr. Chuck Stowe, has to have been my favorite teacher of all time. He has the kindest heart and a true passion for sharing the arts with others.
Food: Buffalo Chicken bites are my FAVE!
Color: It is be a tie between light pink and Carolina blue.

TV Show: F.R.I.E.N.D.S. will forever and always be my favorite show.

Holiday: Christmas!!! I love all the quality family time, as well as decorating.

Sweet or Salty: I am a sweet snack type of gal.

Workout: Getting a nice barre workout in is my favorite way to stay in shape!

WHAT INSPIRES YOU? My sweet childhood friend, Destiny Stafford, is someone who will always inspire me. She was an organ donor and saved the lives of 6 individuals because of her selfless choice. Her story is an inspiration to me and I hope it can be an inspiration to many others as well.

WHAT IS ONE THING YOU CANNOT LIVE WITHOUT?  I could not live without my family and friends. They are my rock and I am forever grateful for all their support as I pursue my dreams.

DO YOU HAVE ANY REGRETS?  My philosophy in life is that everything happens for a reason. I have made plenty of mistakes and have had a ton of difficult times, but I would not trade them for the world because they are why I am the person I am today.

BIGGEST MOTIVATION?  My biggest motivation is to know that there is always room to improve your craft. Perfection does not exist. However, pushing your personal limits and boundaries to continue to grow as a dancer and as a person is what pushes me every day.

DO YOU HAVE ANY PETS (IF SO LIST NAMES)?  I have a pet cat named Smokey, who is the must rambunctious little kitten I have ever seen.

BEACH OR MOUNTAIN VACATION?  The beach will always be my favorite place to vacation.

DESCRIBE A PERFECT DAY  IN YOUR LIFE: I would have to say the perfect day would be going to Disney World with the people I love the most. I’m definitely a kid at heart and a huge Disney nerd!

HOW DO OTHERS DESCRIBE YOU? Hardworking, loyal, and charismatic!

DO YOU HAVE ANY HIDDEN TALENTS? It is not really a hidden talent, but not everyone knows that I can also sing!

DO YOU HAVE ANY SIBLINGS? I have 3 younger brothers! Reagan is 18 years old, Tristan is 12 years old, and Kenan is 9 years old!

NAME 5 GUESTS AT YOUR DINNER PARTY: If I could have any celebrities in the world (dead or alive) at a dinner party, I would have Marilyn Monroe, Beyoncé, Walt Disney, Lady GaGa, and Bob Fosse.

WHAT IS THE THEME SONG OF YOUR LIFE?  I Hope You Dance by Lee Ann Womack will forever hold a special place in my heart.

WHAT IS YOUR DANCING BACKGROUND AND EXPERIENCE? I grew up training in all styles of dance as a competition dancer! I was also a member of a ballet company during that time and had the opportunity to study with the Joffrey Ballet during a summer. Growing up, I also found a huge passion for choreography, so I began choreographing my own solos and group routines at my dance studio. I was also a member of my high school’s dance team and served as a captain for 3 years. Following high school graduation, I moved to New York City to study as a Dance Theatre Major at The American Musical and Dramatic Academy. At AMDA, I not only trained intensely as a dancer, but also had the opportunity to grow as a singer and actress!

WHY DID YOU DECIDE TO AUDITION FOR DCC? As a little girl, I admired the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders so much as performers. I always said that as soon as I was old enough, I would give it a shot. Something that drew me even closer to this organization is how the cheerleaders have used their nationwide platform to benefit important causes and serve their communities. I also fell in love with how involved they are with the USO. I am forever grateful that I was chosen to be a part of this prestigious organization. It truly is an honor.

PROUDEST ACCOMPLISHMENT:My proudest accomplishment would have to be organizing and creating the Sharing Talent, Giving Life Benefit Talent Show for the Destiny Lives On Foundation in 2016. This talent show raises funds for the foundation named after my friend, Destiny Stafford, who passed away at the age of 15 years old. She was an organ donor and saved the lives of 6 individuals. All of the proceeds from the foundation go out to the families of organ donors and recipients to help cover medical expenses. The talent show is also used as a way to help educate others on how to become an organ donor and why it is so important. The benefit has been going strong for the past 6 years and has raised over $12,000 to go out to those families. I will continue to hold the benefit for as long as I am able.

IN 10 YEARS FROM NOW I WILL hopefully be known as a successful choreographer and dancer! I would also like to still be involved with the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders Organization in some way. I do not know exactly what route my dance journey will take, but I would like to try to pursue a job as a Disney performer at some point, as well as try for Broadway. I would also hope to start a family! Family is so important to me and I feel like that would just be the icing on the cake.