We had the good fortune of connecting with Rachel Berretta and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Rachel, what role has risk played in your life or career?
If something excites and scares you at the same time you are taking a risk. Moving to Los Angeles from New Mexico with no connections and not knowing anyone was one of the biggest risks of my life. Ever since I was 12 I knew I wanted to move to Los Angeles to pursue dancing and see where it could take me. When I came to Los Angeles for a UDA nationals competition with my middle school team, I knew this is where I wanted to be. The energy was so different, fresh and exciting. It felt like everyone was so eager to accomplish something big. I wanted to be around that energy. I planned and saved up as much money as I could. When it was coming close to the time to move away from home fear and excitement started getting closer. The excitement of what’s to come and the fear of what I was leaving behind. I moved to LA in August of 2019 and jumped into training and taking as many dance classes as I could while also going to college and working part time. Life was busy, I was hustling, stressing and thriving all at the same time. I graduated college in December and was ready to fully pursue dancing and put all my focus into booking a job in dance. I booked my first job in March of 2020 for a music video and a potential Coachella performance. Sadly a week later those dreams were cancelled due to the corona virus. I lost my job and didn’t know what to do or where to go. Everything felt like it was flipped upside down. I went home for a while and was contemplating moving back home or finding a job in LA and figuring it out. I came to the realization that I would rather risk staying in LA during these troubling times and see what I can do and make of myself even in the midst of a pandemic. Life is all about taking risks and chances because you never know what life is going to throw at you. I still train and take classes when I can and I am still waiting to get back out into the industry when things open back up. This past year risk has played a huge role in my life and career. I have been able to dance in front of some amazing artists like Big Sean, King Combs, and Victoria Monét. I received acknowledgment from one of my favorite artists Missy Elliot. I have learned from the best of the best like Denzel Chisolm, Tovaris Wilson, Josh Smith, Brian Friedman, Miguel Zarate, Dez Soliven, Ysabelle Capitule, Natalie Bebko, and Aliya Janell just to name a few. I was able to accomplish all of this because I decided to take a risk and move to the big city of Los Angles. This “risk” has made me stronger, wiser and eager for any and all challenges that lie ahead.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
It is definitely not easy to be a dancer in LA. I am still not exactly where I want to be professionally but every day is a step closer. Every day is a challenge to train yourself, mentally and physically. I try to stay grounded with yoga and meditation. You have to stretch daily so your body can handle all different types of movements, work out to build the strength and stamina to execute dances, eating is also something to be mindful of since it is your fuel. I’ve learned that everyday you have to actively chose to train and be better. It’s not always easy especially in the middle of a pandemic but if you keep pushing yourself to stay on top of it, your mind, body and soul will thank you. I am a work in progress, there’s never an end goal it’s always just leveling up.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I would definitely take them to this new spot EP & LP in West Hollywood for drinks and dinner. Maybe a Sunday brunch at Leo and Lily’s in Woodland Hills. Any beach in Malibu of course. Some thrifting on Melrose. And for dancing I would take them to Movement Lifestyle (which was my favorite studio before closing due to covid😔) millennium, and playground LA. .
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
My mother Kristina Berretta for supporting me in every way possible and always encouraging to go for what I want.
Autumn Keiko Polk @autumnkeiko