Cassidy Marie Wolf
The Element
La Mesa, CA
Birthday: July 5, 1994
Birthstone: Ruby
Horoscope: Cancer

Always Dream...

I am honored to have been chosen as the winner of the Starpower and Discount Dance Supply Model Search. I would like to thank all of the other contestants and wish them luck in their future ~ each one was incredible! Everyone at Discount Dance has been amazing; it shows that they really love what they do. Starpower and Discount Dance Supply you are the best! THANK YOU!!

I greatly appreciate everyone who took the time to vote for me. There has been so much kindness, support and love, from my family, my friends (old and new), the Great Oak Dance Team, the dance families, KC Tumbling, The Element, Just Plain Dancin, SCEGA Gymnastics, Your Dance Channel, Crave Energy Drink and especially all of the wonderful dancers and their families that shop at Discount Dance Supply! From the bottom of my heart ~ you are all the best!! THANK YOU!!

I would love to send a great big shout out, hug and THANK YOU to my Mom and brother Brandon ~ they always believe in me, support me and encourage me! Also, another shout out to my incredible family and all of the Perez Sisters ~ you are the best!! THANK YOU!!

This competition means the world to me because it combines two passions; dancing and modeling! We did a photo shot at La Jolla Cove. It was super exciting, we could feel the electricity in the air and there was a crowd watching. They had me leaping from the rocks on the cliffs, we had chiffon blowing in the air and I was running in and out of the water in Pointe shoes!! We had a wonderful time and Denise Thomas Photography is ABSOLUTELY AMAZING!! THANK YOU!! You are the best!!

For me... I hope to always continue to dance and perform. I hope everyone has a passion in life that they live and love. There are stepping stones along the way and sometimes there are also hurdles that we all have to get over and through. Just remember to always keep looking up, keep stepping forward and to always keep reaching… once in awhile you might just get lucky and catch a star ~ if only for a moment! I am excited to begin this journey with Discount Dance Supply and I can't wait to see what this year will entail. I am sure it will be a part of my life that will inspire me forever!

Always keep dreaming!

Forever and Always,
Cassidy Wolf

"This model search really means a lot to me. It would give me national exposure to be on the cover of Discount Dance Supply. Everyone I know orders from Discount Dance Supply and since everyone I know dances ~ that means everyone I know would see me on the cover across the United States!!! Wow!! Thank you for selecting me as a finalist this is truly an honor!! You never know what is right around the corner on the road you are walking. I dream of someday attending Julliard. Right now it is only a dream, but I am reaching up toward the stars and hope to catch one. This would be a great stepping stone to place along the path... thank you for this opportunity!"

What were you like as a child? I have Always Loved Dance… it is my Heart and Soul! From the time I was only 2 years old and my mom first took me to a princess dance class ~ I fell in love with dance. I sat on my mom's lap for several classes in the beginning just watching. Then I finally got brave enough to join the class and when I stepped out on to the dance floor with everyone it was like magic for me. I also remember loving dresses that had big skirts so I could twirl and twirl.

What was your home life like? Did you have any brothers or sisters and do they dance? ALWAYS BELIEVE… My whole life has revolved around dance from performing on stage, to dance classes, recitals and competitions. Dancing is so much more than just dancing to me; it is everything I am about in life. My family lives dance, we hear music and we dance from the heart, no matter how silly we look. Dance brings joy, movement and passion to our lives. My mom has always told me to "reach for the stars, you might just catch one." Always dream and believe. That the good things in life do not come easy, you constantly have to push yourself to step up to the next level. She always says, all you can do is go up one step at a time, just keep trying and always, always keep believing. Reach as high as you can dream! I have always loved school and have been in the leadership program. I have a younger brother, he does not dance but he did Karate for five years and has earned a 2nd degree Jr. black belt. I was proud of him when he received his black belt he worked very hard for this achievement!

Are there any books, or teachers that influence you, or that encouraged you? DANCE FROM THE HEART… My first years were dancing at a studio within my home town and I can remember Ms. Gwen and Ms. Sam smiling and laughing all of the time with us little ones. They made dance super fun and they always encouraged us even when we were tiny to just shake our stuff, let it out and just dance. Then one of the teachers branched off and started her own company. She took me under her wings and my competition dance life began. Ms. Kelly Conaway with KC Tumbling said she believed in me and wanted me to do a solo. Ms. Kelly's studio focused on tumbling, she recommended that I go to Ms. Erika Leedy at The Element Dance Center for my technique. The Element was about an hour from our home. That first year I did one acro solo to "Imagine" and I won at nationals Jr. Overalls and was in the showdown. It was an amazing moment for me and Ms. Kelly. Since then under Ms. Erika's direction my dancing has grown up several levels. It is incredible having someone so believe in me, it has given me the belief to dream in myself. Ms. Erika has brought beauty to my dancing that makes me reach deep within myself. I feel so blessed to have learned beautiful technique from incredible teachers at The Element. Still to this day when I get a big win my mom always sends a text message to Ms. Kelly to let her know and we always THANK her for BELIEVING!! Thank You Ms. Kelly and Ms. Erika they saw the possibilities. This summer my family moved and I will be starting at a new studio called Just Plain Dancing ~ JPD. When I wrote this bio I only had the opportunity to be in classes at JPD four times in July between Nationals and Dance Conventions. JPD is family owned ~ Ms. Terry (owner and mom) and her two daughters Ms. Amy and Ms. Mandy. This family brings a very deep level of commitment, passion and intensity into their classes and choreography. This has been challenging trying to figure out the next step

and dance studio. The cost of gas has made it too expensive to commute to La Mesa. There are several great studios in Temecula!! What is inspiring at JPD is that the Schulke family is invited each year to choreograph for approx. 70 college and studio dance teams across the United States! They also have two students who have made it into the finals on SYTYCD! What I see is the dancers at JPD are driven, they put it out there at every class they attend. I love to be challenged. They have super high energy and have fun!! Bottom line… it is inspiring to me to watch these studio owners and teachers, they all love dance, live dance it is their lives and world!!! Thank you for all that you do to bring the love of dance to all of us!! You are amazing!! Oh one more thing, this year I was fortunate enough to audition and make the varsity dance team at my new high school!! Ms. Oddi the coach is young, energetic and very creative. She competed as she was growing up so she really understands the requirements of training and competition. I look forward to this year and all that it will bring!!

What is your favorite subject in class? I love English! I love reading and writing.

What do you like to do in your spare time? We moved this summer to a new city and our new home has a dance room. I love to go in there for hours and just dance.

If you were on a deserted island and you could only take 5 things with you, what 5 things would those be? A solar powered iPod player loaded with all kinds of songs (even though it has not been invented yet that I know of) so I would always have music, my favorite dance shoes so I could always continue to dream, matches so I would have fire to light up the night, easy set up tent for shelter and "callie" the blue blanket that I take with me to competitions.

What's the silliest thing you've done? LAUGH OUT LOUD… Let me see if I can put this into words for you. You know how some moms are really technical they know all of the dance step names and the proper body, feet and hand positions. Ok, that is so not my mom. What my mom sees is "dancing from the heart", she can see the dancers that put it all out there, the passion and the beauty. Ok, now that you have this background let me try and describe the silliest event to you. At the beginning of this last dance season we were talking with Ms. Erika about my solos and my mom was trying to describe a dance move she thought would be fabulous in my solos. It was a move she had seen on SYTYCD. I do not even know the name of the dance move, we have seen it in several of the solo routines. My mom and I were trying to describe this dance move, it is a full out leap into the air and then you flip backwards and arch your back really big and swing your leg over. I have an acro background, my mom would love to see some really cool moves using this strength. So to get to the end of this story. You can just imagine my mom and I just trying to flip all around the dance room trying to describe and show this dance move to Ms. Erika. By the end we had all just lost it and were laughing out loud!! We were laughing so hard we could hardly breathe. My mom gave up and found it on a recorded SYTYCD and then videotaped it on to her cell phone so that she could show the move.

Do you collect anything special? Not really. I guess I would love to say that I collect really tall (5 ft) big dance trophies, but that is more about dreaming than reality. I have just a couple of the big ones (4ft ones), but lots and lots and lots of the normal ones. I do have a few crowns from Title competitions that I won. In those cases I really danced from the heart. I also wish I could say I collect Juicy Couture purses, but I don't. I do have one but that was a gift from my mom after a big win at nationals. I know one thing I would like to start collecting and that is getting pictures taken of me with top choreographers and teachers and having them autographed. This is a new idea because I just attended my first dance convention this summer. A Break the Floor ~ Nick and Mandy Show. I have a great framed autographed picture of me with Nick Lazzarine and Mandy Moore!!! It was over the top learning choreography from these master teachers!! I would love to hang these pictures all over my dance room that would be sooo fun and inspirational!!

What made you decide to start taking dance classes? My mom said I started dancing from the very beginning. I always loved performing and would love to put on shows for family and friends. After I danced for the early years dance for me was always more than dance, it was who I was.

Have you always wanted to be a dancer? Since I was 2 years old I always have wanted to dance. I was never one of those kids that would cry when their parents would bring them into the dance classes. I would walk in on my own and would be so excited to dance! I have always had a passion for dance and I will carry that passion on further into my life.

What is a typical day like for you? Most of my day is devoted to school. After school I basically head straight to dance to start off my night with technique classes. After I finish my dance schedule I head home to work on homework and get ready for a good nights rest.

On any given day what can we typically find in your dance bag? You would find 2 pairs of jazz shoes (tan and black), ballet shoes, pointe shoes, dance paws, water, power bars & snacks, and hair stuff. Oh and my cell phone.

What do you like most about dancing? Giving yourself a goal and then achieving it!

What do you think is unique about you and or your dancing? When I dance my mom says I shine on stage. I love performing and she says it shows. I love learning new combinations and then taking this home and running them over and over by myself in my dance room. I love to add my own style to the combination to see what I can develop. Having some strength with acro skills also helps and I hope to develop some really creative and cool moves using this skill.

What has been your favorite dance moment? All I have talked about in these questions is studio and competitions. I am really fortunate to have a really good friend who is reaching for his star in music, his name is Austin Anderson. He has come a very long way from our home town in Ramona. With that said, what this means to me is some of my very favorite moments is performing on some really big stages; Coors Ampitheater and also at Universal Studio City Walk. When we first began it was called Austin & PT3. The PT3 stood for Platinum dancers and there were three of us. The three dancers were Rachel and Shannah James and myself. We went on auditions to LA as a group back then and it was over the top exciting, cool and super fun! We still have jackets that say PT3. Well over the last couple of years I have not been able to dance with him as much because competing takes up all of my time. It was really cool, Julie would bring in top choreographers to teach the dances. Another big moment was when I did the "Kids Rap Radio" commercial. It was also hysterical too. Julie was able to get me into this commercial by saying I was amazing at hip hop. Yes, I can dance and do hip hop but it does look like I am a ballerina doing hip hop. We worked it out when we were on set they had me throw some acro stunts. It was really fun! There are two more big moments; one was when I won the National KAR Photogenic and was on the cover for an entire year and also being selected as a finalist for the Discount Dance Supply model search!! This is truly an honor.

What challenges do you face as a dancer? REMEMBER KEEP REACHING FOR THE STARS… Changing high level competing dance studios has not only been challenging but it really made me super sad and heartbroken for awhile. I know each one of you can relate to your dance family at your studios. Now just imagine that all of that is pulled out from under your feet when you have worked so hard and have wonderful friends and dance partners. That is how I felt when my mom brought me the news that she could not figure out how to make it work at my current studio that we all loved sooo much!! We had moved to another city during the summer. Dancing is more than dancing it our lives. Both my mom and I had lots of tears and she really felt bad having to give me this news. I felt my heartbreak!! We really loved Ms. Erika. My friends from my old studio said they understood and that they will always be my friends!! I understood when my mom explained that it is just too far because of traffic and the reality of the cost of gas made it too expensive and she could not afford it ~ but it still was really sad. Now put yourself in my shoes. I had been with The Element in La Mesa and I was walking in the door of one of our main competitors JPD in Temecula. I was so nervous and it just felt really awkward. What I found was really a very different experience. As soon as I got there right away some of the kids came over and welcomed me. For this I have to say THANK YOU and I so APPRECIATE IT!! I have really only had a couple of classes at my new studio when I was writing this bio. Their style is sooo different than the studio I have trained with all of these years. I know I have a lot to learn when I step on to their dance floor. I stand in amazement as I watch their dance ethnics on being determined and driven. Their core and center is amazing and I watch them just turn and turn and turn… they are amazing dancers. Although I still have a very sad spot in my heart I have found a new desire to grow as a dancer. I have regained a new sense of self and greatly look forward to learning under their direction. It will be amazing since they bring to the studio a tremendous amount of passion for dance and this makes the studio fill with creative and very driven high energy ~ it brings desire and you can see it on the girls faces that they want to reach for the stars even higher.

What are you most proud of about yourself as a dancer? I am proud of the dancer that I have become because I am more open to new styles and choreography! I also think cheering and encouraging everyone else is super important!! Good sportsmanship is so important not only in dance and competitions but in life!! I believe in the Golden Rule. I had a very successful dance year I made it into many of the overalls but making it into the overalls at Riverside Showbiz was a highlight. I also won Nexstar Upland overalls. I ran to Ms. Erika and said how did that happen and she said "you put it all out there, you brought the full package"! Those words of encouragement really mean the world to me ~ again THANK YOU Ms. Erika!! I have made it into the Title court several times this year and won title at the San Diego Kar regional. I count my blessings and will always also be the first to stand up and cheer for my fellow dancers ~ they are all soooo amazing!! I go into competitions not with a lot of expectations ~ but more with a lot of prayer, desire and belief!!

What highlights of your dance life touched you most? We were at a Riverside competition and we had a young set of twins at our studio that were first year competing, they were four and cute as a button. My mom and I were in the audience watching them dance, my mom nudged me and pointed over her shoulder. There sitting right behind us was the twins mom. She is as nice as could be… she was fully in her zone, she was singing the song and doing all of the facials and moving her hands and dancing her feet. You could tell she had rehearsed with them for hours and hours in her home. She was so lit up with love!! It was a really cool moment for us, because I know that is sooo my mom except she does not dance in her seat instead she usually holds her breathe and says a couple of prayers!! It truly was a moment that touched our hearts and has stayed with us as a forever memory!! Their mom never even noticed that half of the audience was watching her instead of her girls on stage… she was so lit up and proud!!

Who has most influenced you or had the greatest impact on you in regards to dance? Ms.Kelly Conaway from KC Tumbling because she believed in me from the very beginning and asked me to do my first solo. She said that she could see that I always "wanted it". Also, Ms. Erika Leedy from The Element, she pulled out of me possibilities that I never knew existed. She taught me deep passion and I loved when she smiled "it lit up the room". Her words of encouragement meant the world to me.

If you could choose one dancer to perform with, who would it be, and what production would it be? I was already blessed because I was paired with Alexis McClure from The Element, she is such an incredible dancer and also a dear friend. I miss her since I have changed studios. I look forward to the future. This next summer I hope to spend it at my cousin's home in New York, attending as many intensives and Broadway shows as possible. I really dream of someday attending Julliard, that is a big dream but who knows what the future will bring especially if I work really hard and pray a whole lot. My mom says you never know what opportunity might be just around the next corner! It is so exciting to see watch the dance road. We have watched seniors at competitions to now in the finals on SYTYCD! Wow! The other big competition every year is Rainbow Dancer of Year all the winners have been amazing!!

What are some of the hardships you've had to endure along the way, some of the obstacles you've had to overcome? One thing that is very difficult for me is that I keep getting casted in younger roles because I am petite. When I am on stage I appear taller because I have pretty clean technique so my lines are straight, this helps tremendously. It is difficult watching your peers and friends dance in older dances and you keep dancing in younger roles. This is by far my biggest challenge to work through, especially when I work so hard in class and really give 150% effort all of the time. It is hard to dance down an age when you are looking up!!

All dancers have to overcome problems and injuries, have you had any injuries and if so what have you done to deal with them? One week before the first year I went to Nationals I fractured my pinkie playing football at camp. I bent it all the way back. It swelled up, turned black and blue and really hurt. The bummer is that my solo that first year was acro. We talked to the doctor to see what we could figure out. He had a splint he put together for me to wear. Since it was a fracture and not a break he said I could take my chances with my solo. I had to wear the splint 7-24 all of the time I was not dancing. Both my mom and my teacher held their breath as I pulled off a tuck and back hand spring. It was scary but I had worked sooo hard all year and that it was my first year at nationals I just had to give it my all. It mattered a great deal to me to give 150%. It paid off all of that hard work. I placed in the overalls at Star Systems and won the overall at Dance USA. Very exciting!!

Before a performance, how do you prepare yourself to get into character? Before I go on stage I always stretch out and make sure I am physically prepared, but to help me mentally, I just imagine myself dancing like no one is watching. I run through my dances on the side.

Do you have any pre-performance rituals? Well yes! My friends and I usually have a little routine we do before we go on we believe it really helps!

How does the audience affect you? The audience affects me a lot I like to hear my friends and family cheering me on, it really helps my confidence!

What do you want the audience to get from your performance? I really would like them to enjoy themselves and really get a kick out of my performance. When I danced my lyrical "Mercy" this year I felt the song so deeply. I always want to connect with the audience and I hope to bring the emotions to them so they feel what I am feeling when I am dancing. I try to dance "inside out" from the heart!!

Can you describe the feeling you have when you are in the wings, waiting for your cue, and you hear the music and you enter the stage? It all depends on the event. Usually I am so excited to dance but I do get nervous! I love it when the teachers are there and they give me a pep talk before going on stage…that helps A LOT!

What thoughts occur to you while you are dancing? Making sure I stay on the music and with the other dancers. Also having lots of personality so it's enjoyable to watch!

If you were to give one piece of advice to aspiring dancers, what would that be? Never give up! Don't let anyone's opinions affect the way you think about dance! Always dance from your heart and always, always keep reaching for the stars!!

Do you plan to pursue a career in dance? Of course! My mother and I have a vision board of many goals we have set for the next four years. She says dream big, believe big!! I would love to someday attend Julliard! (big dream). There really are so many opportunities in the dance world from teaching, choreographing, working on a studio, etc…Just dream ~ and believe!!

Cassidy's Favorite Things

Actor/Actress: Miley Cyrus

Singer: Right now I love all of the music from the sound track Mamma Mia!!

Color: pink

Place To Visit: Disneyland

Animal: a dog (although I don't have one but I REALLY want one)

Magazine: People Magazine, Dance Spirit

Song: Love the Mamma Mia soundtrack

Holiday: Christmas & Easter

Dancer: I love all dancers who "dance from the heart"

Movie: "Mamma Mia"

Outfit: Usually shorts, a tee and tennis shoes! I like to keep it casual.

Hairstyle: I have long, straight blond hair. I like to wear my hair down a lot.

Jewelry: bracelets & necklaces (Juicy Couture) =]

Fragrance: Marc Jacobs Daisy

Shoes: I like flip flops for the summer, but Keds and Vans for the school year.

Dancewear: Discount Dance Supply & Katrina Wear

Dance Catalog: Discount Dance Supply

Dance Competition: Starpower, Kar, Showbiz, Hall of Fame, NexStar, Dance USA, Rainbow, Star Systems, etc…I just found a new passion and that is attending dance conventions; like The Nick & Mandy Show!