Today we’d like to introduce you to Destiny Holder.
Thanks for sharing your story with us Destiny. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
I have wanted to be in the entertainment industry since I was born. Something that always stuck with me was art, in any form. Dancing, painting, acting, makeup, fashion, nails, the list goes on. I used to take every book I read when I was younger and rewrite them into plays. I got to where I am today by being underestimated growing up. I was the only child in my family, without a father, and one with a loud style and noticeable body. You could guess the judgments and assumptions made by my not-so-supportive family members, but being underestimated always motivated me. The underlying reason I did most things was to prove people wrong. Now I do them for myself. I have been a dancer since I was four years old. I had been a drama queen since I was born, and an actress since I can’t even remember. My cousins and I used to put on talent shows for our family during the holidays. I was in a drama club during middle school, and I will always remember my favorite character I’ve ever played because I got to wear a big fake attachment on my bottom and it was the funniest thing. I started taking dance seriously around 7th grade. I was a competitive dancer with Define Dance Space, in Riverside, for years before pausing so I could experience being on the high school dance team.
I was on the Paloma Valley Varsity Song Team for two years, and man was that an amazing experience. Song was a mix of cheer and dance. We’d stand on our boxes and cheer with the cheerleaders at football games, but at halftime, we danced, while the cheerleaders cheered…of course. I had an amazing high school experience, and when it came the junior year, I knew I wanted to either try for the entertainment industry, try to be a fashion designer, or an accountant (I was excellent at math; calculus was my favorite high school class). The decision was always between The Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising (FIDM) or The Juilliard School. I always took what I wore to school seriously. I used to pick out all my outfits for the week, every Sunday. I would put them in order from Mon-Fri. I would take sticky notes and write what jewelry I wanted to wear with that outfit, type of makeup, and hairstyle. Then, I would hole punch the top of the note and slide it onto the hanger of which outfit it went to. I would never wear pants or skirts two days in a row, the same jewelry once in a week, and I only allowed myself to have one lazy day out of the week (which was still a super planned outfit of yoga pants and a cute zip up, shoes, and a hairstyle). Yeah, my outfits were serious, and if you think I ever repeated an outfit in high school, I promise there was something different about it. In 2015, my mom found a high school summer conservatory program for the American Musical and Dramatic Academy (AMDA) in Los Angeles.
So the summer before senior year I went to Hollywood, CA to try it out! Now, this program was expensive and I remember sitting at our kitchen table and crying to my mom because I felt like I didn’t deserve such a big gift. My mother has always reassured me of how deserving I am. This program was, at the time, the best two weeks of my entire life. AMDA LA was the perfect school! Acting AND Dancing? SIGN ME UP! They made us audition for the school before the program was over and early senior year, I found out that I got accepted. My senior year of high school was such a breeze, I think it was unfair. I didn’t want to go anywhere else for college, and before receiving my acceptance letter in the mail, my mom and I had so much faith that I’d get in, that I never once applied to another college and I never took the SATs. Senior year was easy. I then obtained my Bachelor’s in Fine Arts degree from AMDA LA within three years, and now I am blessed to say that I am auditioning all over Hollywood. Before graduating, I signed with an Acting agency, Alvarado Rey Agency, and after graduating I signed with Movement Talent Agency (MTA) and MPM Models as well. Now living as a creative in LA finding the way to my peak.
We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
Definitely not. I know what it feels like to start completely over. In 2012, my family’s house caught on fire and we lost everything. We were homeless for the summer, staying at my Aunt’s place, wearing hand me downs for months. The day the fire happened, my mom took me to the dance studio, my safe space. Dance for me wasn’t about tricks growing up; I saw my teachers as extended family, and they are the reason I’m a well-disciplined performer today. I have so many thanks to give to Raven Gantt and Megan Jenkins of Define Dance Space. They are also the reason I’m so good at planks.
During my 2nd semester of college, a high school friend of mine had passed. That was the biggest emotional struggle of my life thus far, especially while being in such a physically rigorous and demanding school. Figuring out depression and anxiety during that time was extremely difficult. I also gained exercise-induced asthma after a show I danced in, my 6th semester there. After a three nights run of the show, my lungs were incredibly inflamed. Ever since then, I’ve had asthma. So when dancing or exercising, I have to focus on breathing most out of everything.
We’d love to hear more about your work and what you are currently focused on. What else should we know?
I am starting a YouTube channel very soon. (The Destiny Holder) The reason I wanted to start one is that I want to continue to build my platform. I want to show makeup, fashion, talk about mental health, share concept videos, cook with you, and so much more. I am a very passionate woman with a lot of interests. To put all my enjoyment in one place, made by me, for you, sounds amazing. One passion I didn’t see coming was cooking. I am allergic to rice, dairy, and gluten. So I stay in the kitchen, making up new concoctions all the time, and recording them as I go. I just think my life is a journey and my mind is so creative that I want to share it all!
Fun fact: I used to have a beauty YouTube channel at the beginning of high school till the end of my sophomore year and I was so devoted. I have more than 300 videos up, but they’re so embarrassing that you can only see them if I send you the link now. So in present time, if I start to let the fear of judgment set in, I remind myself that I’ve done it before and I never cared what people thought.
Has luck played a meaningful role in your life and business?
I don’t believe in luck. I think everything happens for a reason and there are lessons in all of it. I barely believe in coincidences, I think it’s always meant to be, but sometimes things you don’t agree with happen.
- Website: youtube.com/thedestinyholder
- Instagram: @thedestinyholder @therecipeholder @theglamholder
- Other: vimeo.com/thedestinyholder
Alex Cole, Shelby Denney (@gardenphotographyfilm), Tasha Minn