Lisa Rae’s love and passion for dance started at the age of 3 in a small studio not too far from home, where her mother worked. The youngest of seven children, most who were found dancing in the studio, Lisa trained in ballet, jazz, tap, gymnastics, and pointe and was broadened by master classes in hip-hop, swing, and modern. At the age of 12, Lisa went to Jazz Unlimited Dance Studio. She performed in many local, regional, and national competitions and events, including Star System’s Nationals in Las Vegas, a Philadelphia 76er’s halftime performance, a Miss New Jersey USA fundraiser, the 2006 Philadelphia’s Mummer’s Parade, and the world class 2008 Orange Bowl Halftime Show.
Lisa Rae attended Montclair State University’s dance program for 2 years before returning home to begin her journey as a teacher and choreographer. Since then, Lisa has traveled up and down the East Coast, teaching and sharing her passion for dance with her students. Lisa Rae is exploring new ways to hone her craft and be involved in the world of dance. She was on staff for over 10 years at the Rock School West for Dance Education, in West Chester, PA, where her choreography has won numerous awards and recognition, including NYCDA’s Teen Critic’s Choice Award for her piece entitled “Don’t Hold the Wall.” Lisa is also a guest teacher at the Rock Center for Dance Education in Philadelphia, PA. For 10 years, she was the choreographer at Voorhees Middle School for the drama club’s spring musicals, as well as a guest judge for the National Dance Showcase Dance Competition.
What is the hardest stretch for you?
Flexibility has always been my struggle. It’s something I still have to work hard for, but encourage my students to do EVERY DAY! I still practice my splits even though they are so challenging for me!
What was your first dance routine?
My first competition piece I choreographed was when I was 19 years old to a Linkin Park song called, “Leave Out All The Rest.” I remember it so clearly: what my creation process was like. I think back and SMILE!
What is your favorite dance accomplishment to date?
My piece called, “Don’t Hold the Wall,” competed at the NYCDA Philly Regional Competition in 2012 and won for Teen’s Critic Choice. That award is so prestigious and I was in complete shock. I grew up competing at NYCDA and the dances that I’ve seen won, blew me away. To be counted as one of them is an absolute honor and winning is a moment I will never forget.
What is your favorite dance movie?
SO HARD TO PICK ONE! So I’ll give my top 5: Footloose, Center Stage, Dirty Dancing, Step Up, and Chicago!
What is your favorite TV show?
It depends on my mood. If I want to laugh: Impractical Jokers! If I want to cry: This Is Us. If I’m busy, but like background noise: The Pioneer Woman (a cooking show I’m obsessed with!). Also currently Dead To Me, YOU, MTV’s The Challenge, So You Think You Can Dance, and World of Dance 🙂