Meet Isabella Porreca, 15, from North Caldwell, New Jersey, where she attends Dancers Only in Totowa, New Jersey.
Can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
I started dance at two years old and from the beginning knew I wanted it to be my entire life. As most of the other girls cried going into dance class, I was always the one running in. It’s been my passion since day one.
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?
I’ve never let anyone’s opinion get in the way of the fact that I want to dance as a career. I don’t like hearing the question, “what is your backup plan?” To be fair, lawyers aren’t asked that question, and I don’t think as a dancer you should be either. I will never let anyone’s words or thoughts get in the way of the career path I want. When thinking about moving to New York and being in a Broadway show, my face lights up. Even in the darkest of places, that is what makes me happiest.
What personal limitations, if any, did you go through in your young career?
Even when I go through times when I am just tired, and you feel like you’re working to your limit, you have to keep going. You can always work harder and be better. I think of my future, and it makes me want everything so much more and work so much harder.
Has anybody ever tried to limit you on what you could do? If so, how did you fight it?
Not really. Most people have had very high expectations of me and took me under their wing because of something they’ve seen in me.
How do you conquer negative talk?
I remind myself of my accomplishments and how hard I work. I also think about the future I’ve planned and all of the positive feedback. Never let anyone get in the way of your dreams.
What is your favorite quote?
“When you say you will do something, it will happen.”
So, what’s next? Any big plans?
I am going to keep training, and I am dreaming of attending Pace University for commercial dance in two years. So excited to get to move to New York after graduating high school and auditioning. I have many goals of doing many broadway shows, choreographing, doing movies and tv shows. And never will I stop before I reach those goals.