We had the good fortune of connecting with Lindsey Wedgeworth and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Lindsey, how do you think about risk?
Although it’s cliche, you miss 100% of the chances you don’t take. In my opinion, my entire career up to this point has been built on taking risks — from deciding to decline my acceptance to university to immediately work/travel on a cruise ship, moving to LA alone at the age of 20 to pursue my dance career further, or applying for social media internships that I thought I wasn’t qualified for without a college degree (I got the job btw hehe). They were all risks — I never felt 100% ready for any of those life changing decisions but I would have never known if I didn’t try.
I think taking risks is one of the best things you can ever do for yourself & your career.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
Growing up as a competitive dancer & transitioning that passion into my career, came with quite the rollercoaster of highs and lows. I trained in almost all styles of dance because the more versatile of a dancer you are, the more “bookable” you become. This is one of those lessons that I didn’t realize translated into my everyday life until I became an adult but it’s taught me to always be a student, learn different jobs/skillsets, give yourself more opportunities other than 1 option.
I booked my first professional dance job while I was still in high school which was the Latin Music Awards with Chino Y Nacho — it was a truly life changing experience. Most dancers won’t get to dance on a stage in front of that many people in their entire career yet I got to experience it when I was 17. Not long after that, I booked my first professional dance contract with Royal Caribbean Cruise Lines where I performed & traveled on the Empress of the Seas for 7 months when I was 19.
I was extremely lucky to book both of those jobs at such a young age & took that experience & confidence with me to Los Angeles… where things didn’t quite go as smoothly. I auditioned for a year long dance training scholarship program once I got there & was devastated when I didn’t make it. It felt like my whole world came crashing down. I decided to stay out there & took classes on my own but boy did I struggle…
I worked at the front desk of a fitness studio from 5 AM to 12 PM and as a hostess from 5PM to 12AM to pay me rent. Mind you, I was sharing a bedroom with another girl. It was a 2 bedroom with 4 dancers living in it. I dealt with severe confidence issues, body image insecurities, disordered eating, and more but I knew I loved dance & thought it was all just “part of the grind”.
I ended up living out there for 3 years & learned a lot of lessons along the way. I went on to get accepted to a different scholarship program, booked another dance contract, trained with some of the industry’s top choreographers, performed live, made amazing friends, and more but I didn’t realize how much I was struggling mentally until I finally left (due to COVID).
One of the biggest takeaway’s I’ve learned and now try to help other girls/women with (whether you’re a dancer or not) is that your worth is not reflective of your body image/size. What is meant for you will find its way to you & what’s not, is just simply not meant for you… NOT that you are not worthy of it. This can be with clothes — if it doesn’t fit you, thats okay… find the clothes that do — there is nothing wrong with your body. This can be with relationships — if they don’t like you, thats okay… someone out there will love everything about you. That person just wasn’t your fit. This can be with dance jobs/auditions — you didn’t have the right look or body type for that job? That’s okay — a job that is looking for someone just like you is around the corner. You don’t need to change you/your body to fit the mold of anyone else.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Now that I’m back in my hometown, St.Petersburg FL, I am my friends’ favorite vacation destination (can you blame them?). There are so many cute coffee shops and breakfast nooks spread throughout St.Pete, we would definitely have some iced coffee cafe moments & of course, a boozy brunch with bottomless mimosas on the weekend. The beach is the next stop — we were voted #1 beach in the United States (woooo)! I don’t like crowded/touristy beach spots so we would take the local approach. Pack a cooler with some drinks, pub subs, and a speaker — stay out there all day. Maybe make one day touristy by renting some jet skis, going snorkeling, or going down the waterslides on St.Pete Beach. There are so many amazing restaurants & super fun bars so we would be going out on the town every night. I love rooftops bars and bars with live music!
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
My parents have been my biggest support system since before I can remember. From putting me in my first dance class at the age of 2 or being in the stands of every football game as I cheered on the varsity football team… they have supported every decision I’ve made along my journey. The selflessness they showed while I was growing up to make sure I was able to have such amazing experiences while also keeping me grounded and humble deserves all the recognition in the world. They continue to teach me how to navigate through life with grace, patience, and kindness.