By JACOB RAMOS
Gracefully weaving her way to the center of the stage, a dancer performs her very own choreography, moving naturally through every step. Perfecting this art since she was a toddler, senior Jazlyn Yu is at the peak of her talents, and she is not slowing down anytime soon.
Growing her passion ever since age three, Yu blossomed to become a dedicated member of the GRaVy Babies dance crew as well as captain of the Wilson Dance Company.
Despite her everlasting love for dance, Yu’s dancing career started at a rocky beginning.
“My aunt [encouraged] me to take dance classes when I was [only] three years old. I was very scared because I was the only one who did not have the right shoes or clothes in my first class. However, the practices started to grow on me and that was [when my passion for dance started to grow].”
Yu’s inspiration for her passion stems from her mother’s immense support.
“My mom is my inspiration because she lets me do what makes me happy. Since dance is what makes me the happiest, she has [always supported me] by paying for my competition fees and taking me to all my practices. I dance for my mom because she knows how happy it makes me feel and that is very rewarding.”
Yu decided to pursue dancing going into high school despite initial time management challenges.
“One challenge I have is certainly time management. In freshman year, I had to balance academics with dance and it was extremely hard to adjust to this as a new member in high school,” Yu explained. “Now, as a senior I take classes that are not as challenging and have quit my studio to focus on my school’s dance team.”
Yu also faced a slew of injuries, which impacted her performance immensely.
“I also had a very hard experience when I injured my ankle in junior year. Potentially, the hardest part about continuing [during] a performance was hiding so much pain and keeping it bottled up,” Yu said. “During the injury, I had to tend to my ankle, icing it nearly everyday and going to physical therapy to recover.”
Along with the Wilson Dance Company, Yu is in the dance team GRaVy Babies. Yu explained an amazing comradery amongst members of the team.
“When I first auditioned for this team, everyone was extremely welcoming and very friendly. When I made the team, they were all very encouraging and the directors made sure that we were a tight-knit group,” Yu said. “We see each other every weekend, so it is very important that we see each other as friends, not just teammates.”
Since joining, Yu has had an unforgettable experience, full of growth and education.
“Our team’s board also creates extremely productive bonding days where we are able to grow as a team. The experiences I have had are some of the best memories I have ever made because my passion for dance has grown ever since joining the team.”
Yu would like to thank her parents, coaches, directors and teammates for contributing to the person she is today. Yu plans to further her dance and academic career beyond high school.
“In the future, I want to major in business administration and focus on marketing. During my time in college, I would still like to dedicate my time to a hip hop dance club, or stay in Gravy Babies if I stay near home.”
The young dancer would like to express great gratitude to her dance company at Wilson.
“I love dance team so much because of the bonds and sisterhood I was able to be a part of. Everyone is so close and has such a strong passion for dance, which is very heartwarming and creates a great environment to be around,” Yu said. “We also perform at various school events and rallies which is always fun to prepare and perform for. The moments I have with my dance team are memories I will cherish forever.”
We are fortunate to have such a charming and talented individual as a student in our Wildcat family.