We had the good fortune of connecting with Nichole LeShawn and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Nichole, what do you want people to remember about you?
I want my legacy to be that I was and am a profound choreographer, master teacher and, a bundle of light that uplifts everyone I know and don’t know.

Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I am a Choreographer Dance Teacher & Transformational coach. I honestly am in the position, through love, trial & error. growing up, I was a dancer, actress and model. I actually shot my first commercial when I was 6yrs old and continued a life in the arts all throughout grade school, college, and to the present day. It was extremely hard & difficult, yet on the opposite spectrum it was also fun, joyful & liberating. It has been a dream come true.

My journey struggles began as a child growing up in a house with 1 parent that had substance abuse. This was my, by far biggest obstacle. But at the early age of five, I begin to understand that my joy was my responsibility and that I can shine my light and put on a show anywhere.

Once I graduated high school, I went to college out of state. Two weeks before school was supposed to start, I had a seizure in the parking lot outside, as I was on my way to California to go to dance camp. This was obstacle number two. This is when I realized, I wasn’t invincible and decades of stress combined with not sleeping correctly and malnutrition was the perfect storm. So clearly I reached the point where my brain just couldn’t take it anymore and had to shake me up, to wake me up.

It was quite the journey after that, as one of my neurological test returned abnormal for the next five years. So this means I had to be heavily medicated, and the major side effect of this medication was loss of coordination. As a dancer this was tough. I was on the dance team throughout college and it definitely affected how I performed, how I practice and it even affected something as simple as going up and down the stairs. I continue to dance, but it was hard.

Five years after I had the seizure I went in for my annual exam and my test results came back negative. I could’ve believe it. I was so thrilled and excited, I eventually took myself off the medication. As things begin to look up, I resumed dancing, auditioning for shows, and life seemed normal again. But then I found out that, I had to have knee surgery. Again as a dancer, this one was tough. So I had the surgery, and was out of physical therapy two weeks in advance. It was scary returning back to the dance world, and especially teaching children how to dance, and I could barely dance myself. But eventually things returned back to normal again and I resumed my life teaching dance, auditioning, traveling and dancing in shows. Just when I thought things were normal again, I ended up having to have breast surgery. After this terrifying obstacle I begin to ask different questions about what was going on in my life. As soon as I begin to ask different questions, I begin to receive different answers in forms of different people to guide me differently. With that being said I started figuring out and learning about a different way to take care of my body. Eventually I got it right and the healing process began the moment I actually changed my eating habits. This is a key factor to my career. I say this because as I changed my eating habits, many parents and students of the studios I was teaching at, began to take notice. They began to ask questions and sooner or later I noticed their eating habits changing. Conversations in the studio began to shift from fast food dinner plans to homemade food dinner plans. Parents began to talk about how much more healthy their children’s bodies were becoming, and they can tell a difference in their moods, and with previous illnesses that they used to have. After that I continued choreographing and being a dance teacher, but I also began to study quantum physics and because of my history with seizures, I was always studying the brain. Now I’m able to incorporate a lot of that knowledge while teaching and working with students and parents and I wouldn’t change a single thing if I had to do it all over.

Another obstacle that has incurred in my professional career as a creative director and choreographer for major stage shows, is manipulation from male producers, writers and directors. I’ve endured verbal abuse & emotional abuse. This was more so due to me speaking up and using my voice to tell these producers, writers and directors no. They would ask for me to perform sexual acts, to be paid for my artistry. Even after contracts were created and signed. Eventually, I began to bring a friend with me to these in person business meetings. I’m not saying every Producer, director, or writer is like this, but having a person there by my side. makes it a whole lot easier, and having an agent makes things a whole lot easier as well.

At this point in my career, I have choreographed for Cirque du Soleil, to Choreographing and being a creative director for international resorts, artist, TV and film, dance studios, junior Olympics, major award shows, stage plays and more. Though, I have accomplished all these wonderful things, I was also faced with homelessness, called off two wedding and dealt with your normal life situations. The lessons listed below are exactly how I worked through a lot of the trials and tribulations throughout my career.

Lessons that I have learned along the way are, that it is imperative to take care of your body as well as your emotions. I feel that what you put in your body, is what you get out. So if you put nutritious, good, colorful healthy organic foods in the body, you will get a healthier body on the outside that feels, and looks great. Plus you have more regulated emotions, and this also applies for adults.

Lesson two that I have learned to live by is that, my happiness is my responsibility nobody else’s. I could never give anyone else that much power. Also my feelings are my responsibility and no one else’s.

Lessons number three is that, a belief is just a thought you keep thinking and it can be changed by thinking a different thought. So to all of my performing artist out there that hear of someone else’s journey and believe they have to go through the same challenges to be successful in their‘s, that is simply not true. You will have your own journey to walk, and your own path that has been untouched.

Now I have an online company that works with, and guides parents on how to consciously support a young creative artist and how to give them the tools that will literally last a lifetime.

My brand and Rhett the world should know:
What I want the world to know about me, is that, I am a conscious performing arts master teacher. I consciously guide all of my students, no matter if they are professional or not. I want the world to know that when you have me as a teacher, coach or entertainer, you’re going to get a show. I am always going to bring my joy! I know, because of my upbringing, I always want people to be happy. I know it’s not my responsibility, but if I can shine my light to bring a smile to your face and to bring ease to how you feel, then it is all worth it to me. As a Transformational Coach I help with the emotions in your artistry, guide all artist on how to think, not what to think, all while teaching life lessons to last throughout life. And to do this with ease grace and a smile on your face, is definitely a smile & joy worth spreading.

If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
If I have friends visiting from out of town, my favorite places that I would take them to our two of my favorite vegan restaurants. I would also take them to the Observatory, because that is absolutely beautiful. We would definitely go whale watching in San Pedro, go see the Queen Mary ship, of course go to the beach, and possibly do some dancing.

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Person – My mother deserves all the credit!!

Website: www.NicholeLeShawn.com

Instagram: NicholeLeshawn

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/NicholeleWoods

Youtube: Choreographer1

Other: Www.StartSmart4TheArts.com

Image Credits
Alex Valladares (black and white photos) Ashley T. Hughes (blue pants / high kick & black & white striped shirt with hat)

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