Driven to Dance

Alexandria Chavez ties a shirt around her waist and laughs as she scrolls through music on her phone, searching for the right song to dance to. “I choreograph like one dance a week,” she says, with a tone that suggests surprise at the frequency of her own creativity. As Chavez begins to move about the studio, her presence, confidence and cultivated natural talent fill the space.

"I feel like dance is my other half. I need to dance," Chavez says.

“I feel like dance is my other half. I need to dance,” Chavez says.

Prior to SFUAD, Chavez taught herself how to dance. She would jump on the trampoline, choreograph her own hip hop dances and copy YouTube videos—anything as long as she was moving. From a young age, Chavez’s urge to move was strong. After watching Season Seven of “So You Think You Can Dance,” and seeing contemporary dancer Lauren Froderman win the competition, Chavez knew how she wanted to move.

“I was like, ‘I gotta copy her.’ So I did, and that’s how I learned,” she says. This can-do attitude has only flourished as she’s grown up. Chavez knows exactly what she wants to gain from attending SFUAD and, as a sophomore, already has a plan for after graduation.

“I don’t wanna be a doctor, I don’t wanna be a teacher. I want to be a dancer. And it’s going to happen,” Chavez says. Determined to audition anywhere and everywhere in Los Angeles, Chavez hopes that in attending school she can refine the technique that may have escaped her by being self-taught.

Chavez perfects her choreography.

Chavez perfects her choreography.

Citing the teachers and one-on-one attention offered by the dance program as perks, Chavez also mentions the opportunity to act at SFUAD. In her second year, Chavez has proven herself a multi-faceted talent within the Performing Arts Department, with one play and numerous dance shows already under her belt.

With her natural love of performing, and as someone who seems to have been born on stage, Chavez’s passion for the art is indisputable.

“There’s not a moment when I’m not dancing. Even when I’m eating, I’m listening to music with my headphones and I’m still dancing… I need to dance,” she says. If her determination and commitment to dance are any testament, then it is clear that this mostly self-taught dancer has big things in store.