YouTube dancer visits Okanagan

Taylor Hatala will be teaching at the Okanagan Hip Hop Camp, July 13 and 14

Contributed

Taylor Hatala has been on Ellen, danced on Janet Jackson’s tour and has scored millions of hits on YouTube.

The 13-year-old is coming to the Central Okanagan in July to share her dancing insight.

“I have been a dancer now for 10 years, although I’m still a child I feel like I’ve gotten a student experience with choreography and I wanted to branch out with what I can do and how I can share that with other people,” she said.

Hatala has taught in Los Angeles, in Edmonton and will be spending time in Kelowna, saying she visited for a dance competition in the past and enjoyed the people and the vibe of the city.

The camp runs for ages 8 to 14+. Being 13, Hatala said it was intimidating teaching older students, but she’s up for the challenge.

“For me an experience like this (with students) who are much older than me in my class, it will push me to be the best that I can be as a teacher, as a choreographer and an artist in these classes. It’s pushing me and helping me grow,” she said.

She balances her time in L.A., Edmonton and recently in New York for The Shorty Awards, a social media based award show.

Hatala is currently in her hometown of Edmonton finishing her school year with her classmates but her schedule varies from month to month.

“I’m very busy but I’m very grateful for all of it,” she said.

She enjoys teaching, giving the students everything she can in order for them to felt inspired. Hatala likes seeing the improvements the students make even in an hour-long class.

“I love to dance because it’s limitless and I feel like with my choreography you can experience that and recognize there’s no limit and I can take my classes wherever I want to,” she said.

Hatala related dancing and workshops to being like a family and she advises young dancers to believe in themselves, to be confident but also take constructive criticism and be yourself.

“I’m blessed because I get to share my craft with these people and this community that loves the same thing I do and we can celebrate it together.”

Hatala’s mother Teresa said from a parent’s perspective, Hatala has given up a lot including time and effort.

Her parents encourage her to reach for her dreams and be creative.

“It takes a lot of hard work and maybe being in the right place and the right time,” said Teresa.

Hatala looks up to her first mentor Canadian dancer/choreographer Alexander Chung, but as a young girl she looks up to choreographer/dancer/actor Janelle Ginestra.

“(Ginestra) for me she’s empowering and encouraging and everything I want to be… she’s just a genius at what she does. She’s one of the most amazing human beings I’ve ever met.”

In the future, Hatala wants to pursue different avenues, being known as “Taylor Hatala the entertainer,” rather than just a dancer.

To find out more about the Okanagan Hip Hop camp visit their website.

The camp runs on July 13 and 14 and registration is now open.

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