My name is Meghan Theriault, 15, and I live at Portsmouth, Rhode Island. I dance at Kelley Ann Dance Center.
Can you briefly walk us through your story – how you started and how you got to where you are today.
I always wanted to dance my whole life but pushed for it when I was 14. I was really scared I was never going to catch up, but after seeing dances in person, I fell in love with it, and I wasn't going to let anything stop me from becoming the dancer I dreamed to be. Kelley Ann Dance Center gave me a chance. They saw the potential in me that I didn't see in myself. That same year I became a competitive dancer. I push myself every day past my limits and continue to with the help of the staff at the KADC. Without them, I wouldn’t be where I am today. I wouldn't change anything for the world because dance is how I escape. And when I am dancing, I am the happiest. Kelley Ann Dance Center gave me not just new friendships and happiness, but I consider them my family.
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?
It definitely is not an easy thing to pursue dance for a career, but if you work hard enough and push yourself past your limits, things will come to you in time. It isn’t always easy for me, but I always go into things with a positive attitude.
What personal limitations if any did you go through in your young career?
I wasn’t able to the “young” career as a kid, but sometimes I feel very limited by how full out I can dance. My muscles tend to shake a lot, and sometimes I will throw up and try to keep dancing even if I shouldn’t. I try to eat the right foods and have enough water, but nothing seems to work for me. This issue has been going on since I started dancing but has been getting worse, but I am determined to find the cause. I just want to be able to dance to my full potential.
Has anybody ever tried to limit you on what you could do? If so how did you fight it?
Some of the people that I wanted the most support from weren’t able to provide me with that, and I was told I wouldn’t be able to catch up and make it. But I had to carry on and ignore the negative comments because dance means so much to me, and I think I have come such a long way in a short period of time.
How do you conquer negative talk?
I try and block out a negative thought with a positive thought and tell myself everything takes time, and I am better than I think.
What is your favorite quote?
"Strength doesn’t come from what you can do. It comes from overcoming things you once thought you couldn’t." - Rikki Rogers
So, what’s next? Any big plans?
I haven’t planned too much on my future yet. But I definitely see my future with dance.