Student Spotlight! Gabby Brandwene


What companies/classes are you currently in?

I am in the Jazzcats.


When did you start at Center Stage?

I started when I was 4. I moved to NJ from Brooklyn when I was 3. I was in a different dance school for 1 year and then I came to CS.


Do you remember your first dance routine?

I don’t remember what it was called but it was with Sue and I remember my costume had polkadots.


What was your Center Stage journey?

I started with recreational ballet, tap and jazz classes. Then I added a musical theater class. I auditioned for company a little later than some other kids in 4th grade and went all the way from kittens to Senior CATS apprentice. I decided to take a break from competing and focus on technique for 2 years because I’m in a challenging high school business program. However, this year I joined the Jazzcats company because I wanted to compete one more time before going to college.


Why has it been worth all of the energy you’ve put in to it and the sacrifices you’ve made?

All the hard work has been worth it because I love dancing. It has taught me a lot about discipline, commitment and teamwork.


Do you do other outside of school activities?

Yes, I sing and write lyrics. 


How do you feel about your brother following in your footsteps?

I’m happy that I exposed him to something that he loves so much. I hope he can look up to me as a role model and continues to follow his passion.


Why do you think we have so many Graduating Gabby’s this year?

I guess Gabby was a popular baby name in 2000 and also, Gabbys are the best!


If you could have dinner with any historical figure, who would it be?

I don’t know. I should have paid more attention in AP History last year.


If you joined the Circus, what would your circus act be?

I don’t know but probably something with elephants because they are so cute.


If you were an animal, what animal would you be?

I would be a tiger because they are smart and fast.


Favorite food?

Macaroni and cheese from Boston Market.


First celebrity crush?

Definitely Zac Efron because of High School Musical


TV Show you’re embarrassed to admit you used to watch?

Hmmm, Gossip Girl.


What makes you laugh?

When my brother trips and falls which he does at least 5 times a day.


What’s next?

I’m definitely pursuing business in college. I’ve already gotten several acceptances to business programs but I’m waiting for a few more results and then I’ll have to decide which school to go to. I plan to dance recreationally in college because even though it’s not a career path for me, I enjoy the way that I feel when I dance and don’t want to give it up.


Where do you see yourself in 10 years?

Working for a large corporation in a math related job and living in a city. And hopefully still dancing recreationally.


Will you come back to visit Center Stage, or are you gone for good when you’re out the door?

Of course I’ll come and visit, I’ll miss it so much.