We had the good fortune of connecting with Dahlya Mani Glick and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Dahlya Mani, have you ever found yourself in a spot where you had to decide whether to give up or keep going? How did you make the choice?
The only way I know how to keep going, is because I’ve never considered giving up. I think like many artists, I’ve been encouraged to have a “back up plan,” but my backup plans are always in the same category of creative work. I am a firm believer that, especially in cities like this one where we are surrounded with artist communities, if you just keep going, you’ll keep going. There are so many tangible ways to make your dreams a reality here. Perhaps they’re not in the realm of “a big break” but so many opportunities exist, and you just have to keep chasing them. Time, effort, being open minded and open hearted to any and all opportunities, and knowing in my deepest gut that I simply can not do anything else with my life, even if I tried, keep me going.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I am a multi-dimensional artist, not by choice, but by necessity. Creativity, performance, and collaboration are the absolute force of my lifeblood, They quite literally keep me alive. I’ve studied dance (ballet, tap, modern, etc), voice, acting, music, and writing since I was a kid and never quite got it out of my system. I even paint and draw on occassion just to get my extra emotions out. My relationship with art is constantly changing, so bear with me as I keep this information fairly vague and all over the place. Honestly, I’m just gonna ramble!
Pre-pandemic, I was performing and rehearsing every day. Specifically musical comedy with my comedic music trio, Femmedy Trio, and original comedic musicals at Second City, UCB, and independently. I had just started releasing solo music (Indie-soul/pop) and teaching independent group workshops in creative movement for non-dancers. I was #blessed enough to have just shot my first national commercial starring Jeff Goldblum, and sang on Season 1 of FOX’s “I Can See Your Voice”. 2020 to present day has obviously been a big shift- I recently started virtual vocal coaching for the first time after having focused in on music as a result of quarantine and just naturally being more drawn to it during this time. Music seems to be the most tangible way to create right now, and logistically safe, as it doesn’t require group activity. I am passionate about it but I am still gaining my footing and learning how to confidently admit, I am a recording artist and I am a singer-songwriter, and I am a vocal coach and yes, I know what I’m doing. My approach at teaching has always been collaborative and holistic. Art is therapy for me, so I want it to be therapy for my students (who are really just my friends who let me pretend like I’m a teacher). So I think a big challenge in this is having the self-awareness and belief enough to say, “My methods are non-traditional, but they work, and this is worth people’s time.”
I think a primary challenge currently (minus all the aspects of pandemic life, of course), is feeling like my art is still connected and connectING. I don’t prefer working alone, in fact, I hate it. My “solo” projects are only titled as such because they have my name on them, but the best part of creative expression for me has always been the sense of community, the shared experiences. The process is so much more gratifying than the product, which is perhaps what has held me back sometimes. Yes, I have drive, but I’m no good at social climbing or getting myself into the room. I’m a softy and desire all my creative experiences to be life-enhancing and mutually beneficial for all parties involved. In this way, Hollywood has eaten me alive sometimes. But, my conscience is so strong, and my desire to be understood and to understand is so strong, that I just have to keep believing, if I do everything with authenticity, then it’ll all work out. Isn’t that insane!
My brand is truly no brand at all- I am constantly transitioning into different versions of myself, as I think we all are. Brands are helpful for marketing your art, but unfortunately, I am not focused enough to do that, as of now. I suppose that is the blessing and the curse of the multi-dimensional artist. I thrive on variety, and variety also exhausts me. Often times, I wish I could concentrate on just one of my artistic loves- become really, truly solid at one thing. But that has never been in my nature.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
I’m going to act like this is present day. We don’t have access to the things we previously had access to, and in a big way, I’ve found that has lowered my stress levels. So, realistically, here’s what I would do with a friend for the day:
– Grab a matcha latte at Maru on Hillhurst (everyone there is so hot and so nice, it’s a treat)
– Walk up Commonwealth Avenue to that one Griffith Park hike that goes up to the redwood forrest patch
– Go back down, say hello to some of my neighborhood friends on the walk back (safely and outside)
– Gawk at every dog we pass
– Sit in my building’s backyard and sunbathe
– Make a nice salad and eat it outside
– Take an afternoon snooze
– Wake up and play some music
– Make a fresh lime G & T when 5pm hits (perhaps smoke a joint… don’t tell my dad… but weed is legal here, ok?!)
– Stick on an episode of “The Office” or a true crime doc series whilst having a drank
– Make dinner
– Play some music
– Cry a little about the good and the bad
– Sleep Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
My shoutout goes to my bandmates, Stacey Hardke and Gabi Van Horn. We are in a female comedic music trio together called Femmedy Trio. This has been my longest relationship to date- creative and otherwise- and without these ladies, I’d have stopped performing musical comedy a while ago. They keep me inspired and we have a damn good time together!
Other: https://www.femmedytrio.com/ @femmedytrio https://music.apple.com/us/artist/dahlya-mani/1454047422 https://www.imdb.com/name/nm8233625/ I’m on tik tok but idk how to use it!
Nicole Lauria Kylie Shaffer FOX “I Can See Your Voice”