Amber Nickole

Asheville • North Carolina

Story

I have spent most of my life dancing, it has always been my way of communicating creativity and emotion. When I became an adult, I thought that maturity meant leaving my dream of becoming a professional dancer for a "real job." A few years later I realized my destiny was to dance, so I returned to training. Before, I was an aspiring ballerina with classical, pointe, and modern background. When I began training again about five years ago I became a ballroom dancer. In 2014 I placed as a finalist in the National Argentine Tango competition for stage tango. This was my first professional competition and my partner and I made fourth place with sixteen couples performing that week for stage. I can remember the most incredible feeling when our names were called for the Final round. Throughout the past several years, I have had to overcome an eating disorder that almost took my life. Another challenge was having no way to pay expenses for training. Each week, I would take everything extra I made from work and give it to my coach for private training in the American Smooth Style- Ballroom. There have been so many moments that I felt like giving up, I was poor, I was older, how could I make it, and many more doubts/ fears haunted my mind. Even though I struggled, I never gave up. I decided to begin training to become a ballroom coach and have spent hundreds of hours studying and teaching the various dances of American Smooth and American Rhythm. In three years time I have completed my Masters in Smooth and soon I will gain my Master's in Rhythm. Along the way, I have realized that I have a passion for youth and children. Growing up I had a lot of support from my family and the community which encouraged me to be where I am today. I decided that I needed to begin a dance program that would do just that...give everyone an equal opportunity no matter their background. Currently, I have had the pleasure of teaching hundreds of youth and children to dance. In addition, I have provided many free lesson hours and fund raised for competitive scholarships. I work with coaches and mentors to keep improving my technical and performing skills. My story goes to show you can begin later and still gain success. My dreams are coming true, with much hard work and believing that I am capable no matter what life throws at me. I hope to inspire the next generation to overcome obstacles and never give up on dreams.