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Maja Kereš | Dreamer & Dancer | Ukumelana Dreamers Blog

MAJA KEREŠ | DREAMER

These days there is so many local news about a girl who was dancing in a video of famous Justin Timberlake. For the song “Filthy”. But here, we are not going to talk about him or how great she was in that video. We are going to talk about something other portals did not ask her.

We can say that we are more than happy to have her on our blog, and probably you are going to understand at the end of this story why is that?

We asked her simple question. Who is Maja Kereš? 

I am a dancer, an artist, a performer, a believer, an achiever. I was born in Rijeka, Croatia 30 years ago, fell in love with dance in my teenage years and decided to follow that passion and my gut, and now I live in Los Angeles, USA working as a professional dancer.

Since our brand is located in Europe / Croatia and we have so many differences between the opinions, youth thinking, culture and almost everything else from the rest of the world we wanted to know what is her inner strength for developing herself and moving towards success. We knew that it was not easy to come to the point where she is now so, what did she tell us about her inner strength.

Exactly. There was a lot of sacrifices, investments, expenses and courage. What kept me going is the passion for dance, for stage, for performing and the hunger for knowledge and experience. I had a dream what I want to do and I worked on making it happen.
 
We already mention that we live in two totally different places where nothing is the same. America is a fast-living country which is totally opposite then Croatia. So we asked Maja how did she react the first time she stepped into some big project and of course what was her first big project?
 
 
The first big project was about a month after I moved to New York. I booked a commercial for a brand of water with the famous Mexican artist Thalia, choreographed by one of the most renowned choreographers Luam. It was literally my second job in The States and it was nerve-wracking for me because there were only 3 of us dancers, and the director wanted me to be the principal dancer, so I put the extra pressure on myself that I have to be perfect and that I cannot mess up. Every next project that I was getting, of course, I felt more and more comfortable, because I was gaining more and more experience.
 

Photo by: Mislav Mironovic

From many portals, we already read that she is from Rijeka / Croatia. We wanted to know what she thinks about the young generations, our generations in Croatia and even in her city Rijeka that even now when they saw her at the big scene still talk that nobody from Croatia can succeed in life? We do not want to involve politics here but the opinions of young heads.
 
 
I think the common thing at home is trying to find an excuse why you don’t have something that somebody else has, or why you are not doing something that somebody else is. I have heard a lot of versions about myself as well, from things like I have a lot of money, my parents are rich, that’s why I was able to go to America, etc. etc. My parents are not rich, I don’t come from rich family, I had what I saved for with my own work, and what’s most important – I had a dream. A dream and the urge to dance that motivated me to travel across the world in order to achieve it. I think especially now, with all of the social media and internet that make everything more approachable there is no more excuse not to do what you want. Young generations have the gift of having so many opportunities to take classes on a regular, to choose from different styles of dance, to attend organized jams, battles, to learn from the internet, to have guest teachers brought to Croatia. There is so much more opportunities to work on their craft then when I was growing up. More opportunities to perform, to work. So, basically, what I’m trying to say – the conditions are so much better than years ago, don’t be afraid to dream, and to go after that dream:) The young generations in Croatia are very talented and I’m excited to see how the future of our dance scene is gonna look like, but I do have an advice, or a reminder – talent is not enough, you have to put in work. Don’t rely on social media to get you famous, let your skills speak for you. Become timeless.

 

True motivational speaker if you ask us. We would like to hear what these quitters would say now.

Since our brand is created as a foundation of resistance we asked her what is the biggest resistance for her. For which things she gives the most resistance and why?
 
Biggest resistance I give in my personal life is to failure, or not succeeding in something, whether it be in an exercise, a move, an argument. Sometimes I am actually just stubborn and that’s one thing I am not always proud of. I do naturally resist injustice, seeing or feeling injustice always triggers in me the urge to fight or to help or to do something in order to make it right. I am all for justice and fair play 🙂
 
We know that most of the media wants a good story so they will to often forget about the things that are more important than their “big story for front page”. So we asked our Maja does she have something that she wants to say to the world and media through this interview that nobody asked her yet from other portals.
 
I would like to end this conversation with one of my favorite quotes ever which is “And, when you want something, all the universe conspires in helping you to achieve it.” (Paulo Coelho, “The Alchemist”)
For the end of this inspiring and beautiful blog with Maja Kereš, we gave her a choice of a Ukumelana T-Shirt that she would like to have. Can you guess which one was her favorite?
 
I chose the Dream big T-shirt because it precisely describes me and my journey 🙂

Photos of Maja Kereš was taken by:

Jonard Tan
Mislav Mironovic
Bryan Rone
Joanna Paciorek