How She Moves: Key’Aira Lockett Talks About Her Passion For Dance

It all started about 23 years ago for Key’Aira Lockett, when dance became a part of her life. Since then, she has moved her body to the rhythm of her own music and now she’s here to share her passion on the blog. When ever I come across a video on social media of Key’Aira dancing, I am in awe of how her body moves. I see the energy, the art, the creativity but most of all, I see her love for dance. Her movement is so uniquely hers, it’s hard not to be enraptured by the effortless flow of her pirouettes. A question you need to ask yourself while reading this interview is: Am I doing what I love? Let Key’Aira’s story inspire you…

When did you fall in love with dance 

I fell in love with dance in high school. I attended Booker T. Washington High School for the Performing and Visual Arts as a dance major, while also professionally dancing for Dallas Black Dance Theatre II. In both of these spaces I was fortunate enough to have teachers who invested in me. I felt seen and heard. I think I fell in love with learning, and when learning became fun, I fell in love with dance. 

How long have you been dancing?

I’ve been dancing since I was 3, so about 22/23 years. 

What does it do for body and whole being – physically and mentally?

I’m not one to do a crazy amount of sit ups and lift weights, but because dance is 50% about passion and creativity that then translates through physicality, it frees me. I can over analyze things, so in some instances I get to just be without judgement or move towards meeting a specific demand.  

What challenges have you encountered as a result of trying to push yourself to be better at what you do. 

I’ve experienced anxiety….. lots of it. I always knew that I had to follow my own path, and I think that scared me. Doing something different, and coloring outside of the lines provided no road map. I had to rely on my faith in God, myself, and the universe. Innately I couldn’t go the safe route, my spirit wouldn’t let me. 

Where do you see yourself going with this passion – what is the ultimate goal 

Since graduate school I’ve allowed myself to dive into other interests such as; choreographing, producing, hosting, community organizing, and of course writing. All of these things now inform my movement in a way that can seem spontaneous. I think my passion for dance is in the science of finding new ways to tell a story. I would like to still be investigating this idea of re-imagining blackness, futurity, and femininity in my creative practice. 

What advice would you give to a young dancer?

Listen to your body. That’s your partner. 

Does race affect the opportunities you seek out?

I would like to say yes, and I mostly believe that the opportunities I haven’t gotten weren’t ever meant for me.


Follow @keyairalockett on Instagram

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