Team Zarely: When did you start learning ballet?
Karina Gonzalez: I first started ballet at the age of 7 in Caracas, Venezuela.
Team Zarely: Did you decide to be a ballerina by yourself or was it your parents' decision?
Karina Gonzalez: I have always said that it was either luck or destiny. We were looking for a folk dance school and somebody gave us to the wrong address, which turned out to be a ballet school. It was an audition's time, so we decided to try and I got in. I fell in love with dance from that first audition and it has been my life ever since.
Team Zarely: Your career path in ballet has been truly amazing! Now that you are a principal dancer what is the hardest part for you in being at such level?
Karina Gonzalez: The hardest part for me, is that I am a role model for the upcoming generations of dancers. Everybody is expecting so much from me. But that makes me work harder and push myself every day in the studio more and more.
Team Zarely: And when aspiring young dancers ask for your advice what do you recommend them?
Karina Gonzalez: My best advice is to give ballet your whole self every day. We never stop learning as a dancer. You can learn something new everyday - from a teacher or by watching somebody else dancing. So do your best, push yourself to the limits, do not be afraid of what they will think or say, and above all - enjoy every second of it!
Team Zarely: What is your biggest dream now, Karina? It might be ballet related or not.
Karina Gonzalez: My biggest dream is to start a family on my own. I have enjoyed my career so much. Even that I am still dreaming of dancing some iconic ballets like, Onegin and Lady's of the Camellias. I am so looking forward to start a family. This past summer I had my wedding in Venezuela, so slowly my dream is coming true :)
Photos by Darrin Nguyen