For Blue Springs High School graduate Anthony Braile, a passion has enabled him to see the world.
Braile, a 19-year-old dance prodigy, recently embarked on a European tour with Disney Cruise Line as a main stage performer.
By day, the cruise ship arrives at ports throughout Europe that allows Braile to climb an active volcano in Sicily, swim in the seas near France and Greece and visit landmarks such as the Parthenon in Athens, Greece, or the Leaning Tower of Pisa in Italy. And when night falls, he performs two dance shows on the ship. Both, he says, are less than an hour each.
Not a bad gig.
Braile and Carissa Christensen of Starz Studio of Performing Arts in Oak Grove, say he has been busy perfecting his craft for the last decade, and that got him a contract with Disney Cruise Line.
Christensen wrote that he basically lived at the studio after school where he rehearsed routines and learned technique for 20 hours a week.
“He (Braile) performed in both group, duo/trio, and solo routines with his teammates...” she wrote. “His dancing was noted for being very clean and precise and often included amazing turn sequences, tumbling and leg extensions.”
Braile wrote from Greece that he is versed in jazz, tap, tumbling, ballet, lyrical, contemporary and modern dancing. No day is complete without a dance session, he said.
Over the years, Braile has received accolades that include “Kansas City’s Mr. Headliners 2011,” “Dancer of the Year” finalist for 2011 and 2012 at the Rainbow Connection Regional and an invitation to be on the USA Dance Team to represent USA in Germany. Not only did Braile excel in dancing, but also in school as well, where he was an Academic Letter recipient and National Honor Society member.
“Anthony auditioned for multiple college dance programs and was accepted into the prestigious program at the University of Arizona in the spring of 2013,” Christensen wrote. “However, he had an abrupt change of heart and returned home shortly after accepting their opening.”
Braile’s desire was to not be in the classroom, but to be on the stage, she added. His aunt, Shelley Kreisler, who is also an instructor at Starz Studio, discovered Disney Cruise Line and began preparing a video audition tape for him.
“This included an elaborate montage of both his past performances and some specific skills that Disney requested documentation of,” wrote Christensen.
“I sent a video audition to Disney at the beginning of December and they contacted me in January telling me I got the job,” wrote Braile.
For the next three months, Braile will continue to perform on the Disney Cruise Line that includes stops at Portugal, Spain, Turkey and Croatia. After that tour of Europe, he wrote the cruise line will head down to the Bahamas in the Caribbean Sea to dance.
As for future goals, Braile said that he hopes to get another contract with Disney Cruise Line or possibly find another position with the company.
“It’s a great company to work for.”
Hard work pays off, he advises other young dancers. Also, do what you love and not what someone else wants you to do.
For more information about Braile’s dance studio, visit www.StarzDanceStudio.com .