There’s no doubt that I love dancing. The ability to express myself through it, connect with people and make them feel special are the priceless rewards. I was able to do all of these in being a parade dancer! And I have had the privilege in more than a decade.
Many people are surprised of what I do for a living. Some are in awe. Some admire it. But most of the time, they ask me again, “No, seriously, what do you do?”. And I just answer the same thing and they’d stare at me. What’s worse, they even double check, “Parade Dancer? Is that even a job?”
In 2007, I auditioned for Hong Kong Disneyland. When I got a phone call asking of my earliest availability, I don’t remember making the lady finish the details of the contract and unhesitatingly said, yes. On my way of completing my 12th year, I am still dancing down Main Street for people all over the world, visiting the park. It was a tick in my bucket list to perform internationally. And now, watching this video about Sydney reminds me of that girl that once dreamed of a magical team. Me.
Check out this “Disney Dream Job” feature.
It is quite true how the choreographer said that being a parade dancer is all about the heart. A parade dancer tells a story. They involve their audience in doing so, taking advantage of that close-up proximity. This allows an exchange of reaction between parties which becomes a platform of readily available feedback from the audience to the performer and vice versa. Like sincerity, truthfulness and commitment to the craft. Connection happens in a fleeting moment. Sometimes, the audience get to tell when parade dancers are faking it because of the real deal right in front of them.
Of course, there are other factors to consider such as the weather, the costume and the sustenance of energy for good 30 minutes. These are already a given. But occupational hazards are present at all times. I have revealed more distractions in my post about the truth in being a dancer. And so, we, performers detach ourselves to getting fixated on those and has developed a capacity to surpass that at every show. Majority of our strength comes from the crowd, believe it or not. On top of our heart speaking of our passion for dance.
My heart is full every time since I became a performer for the happiest place on earth. Days aren’t perfect all the time but being able to perform makes them so. To you who’s reading this, find your passion and claim it. Do it with all your might because there’s always that somebody looking up to you.