Magazine article Dance Spirit

Leili RACKOW

Magazine article Dance Spirit

Leili RACKOW

Article excerpt

You might have seen 16-year-old Leili posing in a Discount Dance Supply ad, or competing at the 2015 Youth America Grand Prix finals in NYC. But this super-focused aspiring ballerina spends most of her time away from the spotlight, training at the San Francisco Ballet School. In fact, Leili first fell in love with the stage after studying traditional Chinese dance as a way to honor her heritage.

It turns out that Leili has a remarkable backstory: When she was 11 months old, her American parents adopted her from her foster mother at an orphanage in Nanchang, China. Now, her hard work and talent have put her on the path to success.

FAST FACTS

BIRTHDAY: December 29, 1999

HOMETOWN: Agoura Hills, CA. "But I was born in Nanchang, China."

CURRENT FAVORITE SONG: "New Soul," by Yael Naim. "It always puts a smile on my face!"

FAVORITE FOOD: Mexican food

BEST ADVICE SHE'S received: "Face your challenges with grace and humility. …

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