Karel Flores was born and raised in Mexico City Mexico into a family or artists. From very young, Karel was exposed to both acting and dancing. Throughout the years, she took up on acting, jazz, Hawaiian dancing and cheerleading but these were only extracurricular activities and she never imagined actually making a career out of dance nor acting. However, not until her late years in high school that she discovered the dance that would change her life, salsa.
WSF: Hi Karel, what motivates you to be always so positive always inspiring and pure sharing your skills with others?
Karel: Definitely my biggest motivator is how grateful I am for all the love and support of my fans – it’s because of them that I am in this position and able to share my love of dance. Whenever I am down, I try to remember that and it fires me up to get done whatever I need to do!
WSF: We are very keen to know how a day of Karel looks like when not at a festival.
Karel: It depends, but I always try to keep myself in shape and keep training, so there’s always gym, dance classes, stretching classes, yoga, rehearsal with my pro team in NY. Then of course there’s all the responsibilities we all have – cleaning my apartment, walking my dog, etc. I try to find balance though and also love spending time with my friends, exploring new places in NY, and sometimes just relaxing at home and watching Netflix.
WSF: Tell us about any rituals you do before going on to the stage
Karel: Before going on stage, I stretch and then if I’m dancing with my team with have a pep talk and give each other support and encouragement to have a good show. I do like to make sure that my apartment or hotel room is clean before I leave for a show; I make the bed, tidy up, and close the bathroom door. That way it feels organized and I can go on stage with a clear head…I suppose that has become my ritual!
WSF: Share with us what you are looking for when choosing scene costume?
Karel: For me, a costume has to make sense with the music, theme, and feel of the routine. I usually imagine a color when I hear a song. I also have an amazing costume designer Kathleen Andrews and we work together and brainstorm ideas. She also listens to the music. For example, my new routine Perdoname means forgive me, so we researched which color represents forgiveness, and found that pink is one of them, so my new costume is pink.
WSF: Whats your favourite food?
Karel: Anything sweet. I love cookies, donuts, ice cream and anything that is deliciously sweet and fattening.
WSF: When flying what do you do up there?
Karel: Normally when I fly I do face masks or a facial treatment, I read, or I sleep.
WSF: What makes you happy?
Karel: It’s so many things, but the first thing that comes to mind is my friends and family, having a strong support system with people I look up to, admire and love. Having them around me makes me very happy. Also, I gain a lot of happiness from continually working to improve myself and grow as a person.
WSF: Your favourite and most inspirational place?
Karel: New York
WSF: What is your dream project?
Karel: My dream project would really be to make a difference in the world; to create a charity to help out children and to make sure that little girls grow up seeing strong women as role models. If I could accomplish this using dance in some way, then even better.