What does beauty mean to you?
Uniqueness. Being different, not fitting into the mold, all of these things—not being able to compare yourself to someone else and say, “Oh, I’m just like them.” Being different makes me beautiful.
What does it mean to be feminine?
Being feminine is owning who you are as a woman, whatever that may be. I feel like my strength makes me feminine. My grace as a ballerina makes me feminine. My perseverance an unwillingness to give up makes me feminine.
When do you feel most inspired?
When I’m in the studio, or when I’m on stage—but it’s definitely when I’m surrounded by music and movement. Also, being surrounded by dancers that I mentor, or who I’m just observing, is extremely inspirational to me.
What is the difference between being a role model and being a muse?
As a muse, you have something about you that attracts people to you—you are a vessel to be able to share whatever it is the artist has envisioned. As a role model, I think that you take on a responsibility to be more powerful, and the example that you are setting for the next generation is extremely important.
What are your first memories of fragrance?
My first memories of fragrance are definitely connected to my mother. As someone who was very aware of what she looked like when she left the house, she always had something that had, like, a vanilla scent, and then a bright red lip.
How do you use fragrance now?
I over-use fragrance now. [Laughs] Usually when I put on fragrance, it’s before I step onto the stage. So I definitely have this strong connection to performing and being onstage with the scents that I wear. It kinds of puts me in my zone and in the mood, and just feeling really beautiful, feminine, and ready to perform.
What advice would you give to young women trying to realize their dreams today?
You know, as corny as it sounds, it’s so important to be your biggest champion—to believe in yourself. I think it’s important to surround yourself with people who are goimg to be there to push you on those days when you just can’t do it on your own, but you have to have that strength and belief in yourself, first and foremost.
What is it about the discipline of ballet that you think has had a positive influence on your life?
It takes a certain type of person to be a ballerina. You have to be willing to put in the hours, the endless hours and days of work. But every dancer, I think, can say that they’ve learned what it is to be an extremely hard worker, and what it is to give of your time at such a young age, and make that sacrifice. And every dance I know who stops dancing goes on to do incredible things, because we have that structure and discipline ingrained in us. Every venture that I become a part of, I definitely take that work ethic with me that I’ve learned from being a dancer.