Growing up I was known as the quiet, shy girl. The performing arts helped break me out of my shell, into who I am today.
I used to be super-shy. I remember asking a friend how I came across to new people. She told me I seemed distant, uninterested–and maybe even a little rude.
When I was five, my parents enrolled me in classes for piano and theater. And I loved it. Now, I continue to dance, sing, and play the guitar. For more than a decade now, I’ve consistently performed in front of hundreds of people.
The shyness didn’t go away overnight. But music and theatre gave me opportunities to put myself out there and be vulnerable.
When I get in the zone, the audience disappears. I am focused on my task at hand. After the shows, complete strangers come up to congratulate me. Once you’ve performed in front of a crowd, speaking to strangers doesn’t seem so daunting.
So often, in school, there’s emphasis placed on the core curriculum over the arts. But my time performing has given me life skills that are just as valuable as anything I might learn in school.