"I remember when I was getting ready to compete in Youth America Grand Prix in 2002, I was doing the Black Swan Variation. I wasn't giving enough fire to portray the character, so he stopped rehearsal and told me that what you do onstage doesn't come out of thin air. He told me to go outside and actually look at people. Look at their relationships. Find somebody you can relate this character to and figure out a way to embody that. I think that's when I realized that dance is really just an extension of life."
Watmora Casey is the artistic director of Faubourg School of Ballet in Hanover Park, Illinois.
Don't miss AAADT at the David H. Koch Theater in New York City, tonight through Sunday, June 18.