Aubrey Stewart - Texas Interview by Claire Plath Nomination and Photography by Tyler Lyons Photography Issue 38 of Inspiring Teens Magazine
The nomination: I am nominating Aubrey because I have watched her grow as a dancer and a person over the last year and a half. She never stops growing in her skills and she is an inspiration to all the younger dancers at her studio. They look up to her as an example of who they want to be when they grow up.
Photography by Tyler Lyons Photography
My mom was working as a tumbling teacher at United Performing Arts Company, and she wanted me to work on my coordination. She enrolled me into pre-school tap/ballet and tumbling, and I have been tumbling and dancing ever since. My aunt and grandmother were dancers, so I have it in my blood. My cousin is also a dancer and now one of the choreographers at my studio. She works for many local studios in the Metroplex. I believe my passion comes from inside. I have a hard time expressing myself with words, so this is how I can express what I am feeling. I love how dance makes you feel free. Free to move and get out anything that you need to get out. When I was younger we used to shake out our nerves by jumping and shaking, kind of like that with dance. If you are sad, you can dance sad; mad, find song and let that anger out.
I still attend a public fine arts school, so my daily routine revolves around education and dance. The last period of my school day is dance, so I have an 1.5 of dance at school before I head to the studio. I am up at the studio 4-5 days a week, from 3-4 hours a day. Stretching is the most important, and I try to fit that in at some point during the day. I like to attend different master classes, conventions, and intensives to improve my skills. It is always good to learn from different instructors and receive different insights on how to improve your skills. It is a lot of fun too!
Performing a solo called “One Beautiful Evening”. It was the first time I worked with my cousin, and she choreographed my solo. It was a breakthrough year for me in my performance and growing as a dancer.
I don’t really talk and express myself verbally very well, so using movement through dance helps me express myself.
I love working with the younger dancers to show them where they can go with their dreams, and that they can accomplish anything when they put their mind to it.
My cousin Jayci inspires me because she has had some struggles through injuries but keeps on pushing herself and has stayed strong to this day.
Something that you don't know about me, When I was 5 years old, I had eye surgery. I was diagnosed with strabismus in both eyes. This basically means, to put it simply, that I had two lazy eyes. It was actually one of my dance instructors that suggested to my parents that I might need to go get my eyes check out. I was referred to an ophthalmologist, and was then diagnosed. Since, I was about to be 5 and enter Kindergarten, the doctor and my parents wanted me to have surgery as soon as possible. So, I had surgery the day after my 5th birthday party. Many people do not even know that I have this issue, and sometimes I have to let new teachers know, or remind old teachers or instructors. Even though I can now focus both eyes on objects and see 20/20, I don’t see depth perception as well as others. I also have some problems with 3D and color scale. I have to go to the ophthalmologist twice a year for checkups. My doctor says I’m his best patient. He believes that the reason my eyes have done so well is because of dance. I am exercising my eyes every day, building up the eye muscles and keeping them strong through dance. I want other young people to know that if you have disability, you can do anything you put your mind to, push through it and get stronger. Dance has helped me in so many ways, emotionally and physically, and I love it with my whole heart.