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Dancer Spotlight: Josh Spell

Q: How did you get involved in dance? 
A: In the summers I would stay with my grandmother.  She belonged to a Senior Citizens Group called the Happy Steppers.  I would go along with her to practice and watch.  When ladies were absent I would step into their places.  It became evident that I had a natural ability to pick up choreography and musicality.  Eventually, I began formal tap lessons at the age of 10. Being a boy in a small dance school meant that the teachers were always trying to convince me to do more.  I eventually gave in and started taking ballet at the age of 12.  The rest is history…

Q: What do you enjoy most about being with Kansas City Ballet?
A: I enjoy my fellow colleagues here at KCB.  There is such a strong sense of community that allows me to push myself but also not to take ballet too seriously.  We work hard, but we also form very genuine relationships.  In the three months I have been here, I already feel like part of the KCB family.

Q: What is one thing most people don’t know about you?
A: Most people don’t know that I retired from dance when I was 29 and truly thought I was finished.  I closed the door on ballet and went to school full time for Interior Design.  The universe works in mysterious ways and did not think I was finished, so here I am again dancing professionally.

Q: What is your favorite thing to do outside of dancing? 
A: I love to cook and travel.  After living in Seattle for almost 12 years I miss that family dearly.  Since I can’t travel every weekend I have gotten creative.  I often Skype with friends back home in Seattle, and we choose a dinner menu and then cook it together on Skype.

Q: I understand you’re a Pilates Reformer instructor. How did you get involved in that? 
A: As a dancer I’ve done Pilates my entire career.  It has kept me very balanced both physically and mentally and I truly believe in it.  Last year when I took the year off from ballet, I decided to get certified so I could share my knowledge about the body with others.  I also wanted to contribute to making people healthy, strong and balanced.

Q: What are you thankful for this Thanksgiving? Do you have any traditions? 
A: This is probably the first year since I was 19 that I have been able to go home for Thanksgiving, so I am very grateful to get to see my family in Texas.  My Thanksgiving traditions have always included dancing “The Nutcracker” the next day.  I always manage to eat some good food on turkey day, but it is never easy dancing with all the extra pie I have consumed.

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