Today we’d like to introduce you to Keshawn Johnson.
Keshawn, we appreciate you taking the time to share your story with us today. Where does your story begin?
I always loved to dance ever since I was a young kid. I would learn the dance routines from Disney Channel and do them inside my room for hours just because I enjoyed moving to the music that much. I thought my passion was Karate, but I realized after about a year and a half I wasn’t enjoying it as much. It wasn’t until I got to middle school that I realized I really really wanted to be in the dance class that my school offered. Dance class filled very quickly, and I was placed in Band class. I ended up learning how to play the clarinet and had a great time, so it wasn’t completely negative and helped me gain another skill. I would have my friends show me what they were learning in dance class and then go home and try for myself. Through a lot of back and forth and pulling some strings I ended up getting into dance class my 7th grade year. The moment I walked into the dance room I could feel my heart bursting with excitement. I was doing so well in class that my teacher Melissa Colon suggested that I try out for the competition dance team. Though reluctant at first, I ended up trying out for the team and making it on which is where my love for Dance really took off.
My #1 support system was my mom, Laneshia Johnson. Anything I’ve ever needed whether it be a pep talk or money for one of the different sports I was a part of, my mom always found a way to make sure I had what I needed. Traveling to so many different places, meeting new dancers, dancing at conventions had become my life. I ended up joining the cheer and track team in high school, but I always made time for dance rehearsal because the fire was still burning. I had no intention of dancing after high school but as I got closer to graduation, I realized this was something I could do for a living. I took extra classes outside of my studio to better my training and ended up being accepted to the American Musical and Dramatic Academy. While there, my teachers pushed me well beyond what I thought I could ever be capable of, and I am forever grateful. I learned so much about myself and what it means to be a professional dancer while attending school and I’m sure there’s still so much to go. I just recently graduated with my BFA in dance this past February and I’m ready to take on the world
Would you say it’s been a smooth road, and if not what are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced along the way?
I would say my two biggest obstacles would be dealing with an accident that happened when I was younger and my own self-confidence. After the incident, I had to relearn how to walk, was in and out of surgery, and attended therapy for a very long while after. The accident left me with scars that as I grew older, I felt self-conscious about. I had to deal with that mentally and would automatically know what someone was staring at whenever I was being looked at for a long period of time. Having to work through all of the inevitable questions and stares that I would be getting in this field was definitely something I had to figure out how to navigate. On the other hand, my own self-confidence in my abilities was another obstacle I needed to conquer during this journey. There were many instances I was made fun of for being a guy that enjoyed dance. Along the way, there would be people trying to convince me I need to stop dancing. Even after getting into an amazing environment where everyone had the same passion as I did, for the longest time I could only see everyone else’s talent and brushed my own under the rug. I took most of 2020 to really sit down with myself, meditate and started to speak positive affirmations out loud thus opening my mind to what my mentors and peers could see in me. Realizing that I deserve to be in the room too was a big deal for me and opened so many doors.
Appreciate you sharing that. What else should we know about what you do?
I am an artist that specializes in dance. Mainly I’m into the more groovy, wavy side of HipHop, but I also love the sharp, Tour-Dance aspect of it all as well. Mostly I would say I’m proud of the authenticity I bring when I dance. This is truly my life and there is not a day that goes by that I don’t dance in my living room at least once to some old combination I learned. I love to entertain people. The feeling that I get when I can see that I’ve impacted the crowd through movement never gets old. It fills my heart with this joy that I am sure will never go away. Being able to do something that I love but also being able to bring a happiness to others truly makes me grateful. I would say my heart is what sets me apart from others. I care very deeply about other humans whether on stage, in a rehearsal setting, or just in regular life situations. If I have the opportunity to brighten someone’s day while I’m performing or just talking to them in general, I take it and multiply it times 10.
Are there any apps, books, podcasts, blogs or other resources you think our readers should check out?
Once I started listening to Dylan James’ podcasts/videos on YouTube about the human mind and working on how we view ourselves internally, my life took a huge turn! Listening to him helped me work on my inner confidence which in return, my outer confidence started to show and eventually started bringing more opportunities.
- Email: Keshawn702@gmail.com
- Website: https://www.keshawnjohnson.com/
- Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/kesxwn_/?hl=en
- Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC_LCmqbNfehZOkB1LHmHUxQ
Josh Rose Photography Chris Jon Photography