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Meet Chiara Gonzalez

Today we’d like to introduce you to Chiara Gonzalez.

Chiara, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
I was born in San Juan, Puerto Rico but grew up in Miramar, Florida. I come from a HUGE family that’s incredibly close with one another. I’ve danced my whole life, competitively and non competitively. I went to a studio as well as an arts school. My whole life, I knew dance was my passion, my first love, my everything. What I didn’t know was that I’d end up wanting to actually pursue this as a career choice. Growing up I wanted to be some sort of doctor, therefore I worked my butt off in school to get the grades I needed so that I could get into a university with the best program for what I wanted… my best friend ended up getting cancer & as her world came crashing, mine in a way did as well. I constantly had to be strong for her, there for her, but what I most importantly learned from her is that our “normal” life can be taken away from us at any given moment. As she fought & beat cancer, she motivated me to go after what I wanted. I realized I wasn’t ready to give up dance, that this was only my beginning. A month before graduation, I talked to my parents (after already getting accepted into the university, I had my headset on, keyword: head). I explained to them, I would always have these what ifs in the back of my head if I never tried going after my dreams. I wanted to just give it my all and see where this road could take me. After lots of discussions, my parents and I decided to take a gap year from college.

As soon as I graduated highschool (age 17), I moved to Los Angeles, following my heart instead of my head this time. And though this may sound like the dream of a lifetime… it wasn’t. I fell into a state of depression, I felt lost. I didn’t know anyone out here, I was young. All my friends were experiencing the college life, my family was on the other side of the country & then a tragedy happened. A friend of mine from my hometown dance studio was murdered in a school shooting, Jaime Guttenberg. This kid was one, if not THE, biggest supporter I ever had. Not only that, but she had a heart of pure gold. I told myself I couldn’t just sit around and let life pass, I needed to make her proud as she now was looking down and watching over me. I began to get more involved in my community, took more classes. Auditioned for a company named Immabreathe, where I would make some special friends that would last me a lifetime. I started school again, majoring in psychology at Florida International University. It hasn’t been easy, it’s definitely been a rollercoaster of emotions and a crazy amount of ups and downs. But this is the life I chose and I don’t regret one single minute of it. It’s helping me become the young woman I am today. Ambitious, determined & hungry to grow.

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
Definitely not a smooth road. The majority of the time I feel alone & trust me, I have the most AMAZING support system back home, it just gets rough . Especially in a cut-throat industry like this one. But at the end of the day it’s all about how bad you want it and I. WANT. IT. I know the sacrifices will pay off and I have faith that I’m on the right path.

We’d love to hear more about your work and what you are currently focused on. What else should we know?
I am a part of 2 dance companies, immabreathe and ImmaBeast. They have become my family and home away from home here in LA. They give me the space and opportunities to just let go and be myself with no judgment. They train me and make me better not just as dancer but as a human.

Later on in life, when I am old and my body can’t move the way it once did (that better be a million years from now haha), I would like to be a movement therapist. Incorporating my psychology major, with my passion for dance. I want to help people struggling with mental issues, in the best way I know how, by movement and release.

What moment in your career do you look back most fondly on?
Honestly, moving to LA alone at such a young age. No family, no friends, just me. As much as I’d love to say my proudest moment was booking a music video or a live performance, it would have to be this. Because THAT is what has made grow the most and THAT has made me who I am today. A strong and independent woman.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
Gianna Sanchez, Katie Rich

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