ASOI: Rosalie Zarhloul

Senior Rosalie Zarhloul’s love for dance has fluctuated through the years but has now solidified because it helps her grow as a person and she allows all aspects of her life to influence and improve her dancing.

Zarhloul first started dancing at four years old. Her reason to dance evolved as she got older. She says, “At first I thought it was cool and I wanted to be proficient at something, but as I started to pick it up better the way it made me feel was just great. Any problem [I] had, [I] didn’t have to talk about it; [I] could just dance.”

Despite her initial enthusiasm Zarhloul progressively lost interest as she grew older. “Middle school was a weird time for me, and . . . I felt like I didn’t like it [and I wasn’t] good at it. I didn’t want to do it anymore,” she says.

As Zarhloul entered high school, she realized dancing was something she was passionate about. Although her mom was reluctant to let her dance again, Zarhloul was determined to prove her commitment to dance. “[Her reluctancy] kind of motivated me to show her I could be good at it. [It] gave me a reason to push harder,” says Zarhloul.

Dance teacher Danielle D’Anna has also been a big influence on Zarhloul. Says Zarhloul,  “She taught us dance and that was a big help, but she also crafted our person. She made it so it wasn’t all about the dancing; [if] she had time to teach us a life lesson, she made that a goal of hers…That really helped [me] as a person, which helped [me] as dancer.”

Dance has had many positive effects on Zarhloul’s life; in addition to meeting new people, she says “I became a better leader and a stronger, more confident person.” Just as dance has impacted her life, Zarhloul tries to have her life affect her dancing. “I try to have anyone I meet influence my dancing [and] take [away] something from them [to] make me better in some way,” she adds.

Even with her newfound commitment, Zarhloul struggles to fit dance into her life. She says, “When I was younger I did Wheaton’s studio dance and when I got older I [danced] at Backstage in Columbia but I never really stuck with anything. It was more like ‘here take a class for a month and try to fit it in your schedule.”

Although she will not be pursuing dance in college or professionally she says it will remain a big part of her life. “[When] I grow older I just [can’t] see myself not dancing everyday,” she says.