Yusha Marie-Sorzano is originally from Trinidad, she received her primary instruction from New World School of the Arts, The Miami Conservatory, and The Dance Theater of Harlem. She attended the Ailey/Fordham BFA Program and in her junior year was invited to join Ailey II. She has been a member of Complexions Contemporary Ballet, The Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, and TU Dance under the direction of Toni Pierce-Sands and Uri Sands. Ms. Sorzano has performed works by Ulysses Dove, Mauro Bigonzetti and Ron K Brown as well as with recording artists Wynton Marsalis, Beyonce Knowles, and Rihanna. She was a guest artist on Dancing with the Stars and has most recently starred as the lead dancer in the independent film "You Me and The Circus". When not performing Ms. Sorzano enjoys teaching both nationally and internationally.
When did you first begin dancing?
- o I started dancing soon after moving to the states from Trinidad at about 9. I am a product of the public school magnet program and took my first ballet class in a tiny studio attached to the cafeteria. It wasn’t very pretty and smelt like tater tots.
What style of dance do you prefer and why?
- o I can’t really answer that question. Each style offers something unique. However, I will not deny that at the end of the day there is nothing like an old school jazz combination…..pure satisfaction!
Who have you worked with in the past?
- o As far as concert dance I have danced with Ailey II, Complexions, The Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, and Morphoses. In addition, I have done some work commercial work with Beyonce, Rihanna, and was a guest artist on Dancing with the Stars. My career has been a pretty mixed bag. It keeps me on my toes!
Who do you aspire to work with in the future?
- o Not sure at present. As long as it inspires me I am on board.
Being a freelance dancer, how do you earn your living, ie: do you have side jobs or skills you utilize for income?
- o I teach modern and contemporary classes as often as possible. It’s pretty awesome to be on the other side of the room. I tend to pick up new ways of approaching the art form when I have to use my words to explain it. It’s also really inspiring when someone gets “it” for the first time.
Have you attended college or another kind of training? What/where?
- o I am an alum of The Ailey/Fordham BFA Program.
What is the most challenging thing about your career?
- o Staying in shape during the in between.
What do you feel and think when you’re on stage?
- o See Billy Elliot’s response in the film, Billy Elliot, when asked what he feels when he dances. I think that sums it up!
How do you keep yourself motivated and maintain creative thinking during your off time?
- o I find that I maintain motivation through unpredictability. I try not to plan too much or get stuck in a routine. Don’t get me wrong; routine is what makes a dancer. I just find it thrilling to not know where I may end up at day’s end.
What is the most valuable advice you have received from a teacher or mentor?
- o Everyone’s body is different. You have to do what works for you. I like to apply this statement to my career as well
What element, theme, or character from the Bacchae do you relate to most?
- o Not sure, though I am continually challenged by Agave.
What is the best/funniest/most challenging experience of the rehearsal process thus far?
- o The best: New faces, sensibilities, and artistry
- o The funniest: That’s a tough one…it changes daily.
- o The most challenging: Staying true to the work while still learning the vocabulary. It takes a second to understand how a choreographer works. What their likes and dislikes are. I find it challenging to balance what is asked of me with what I want to say as an artist. We are the vessel for Luca’s language. So it’s important to be clear about what we are trying to convey.