I was nine years old when I asked my dad to teach me how to play percussion. Until then, my sister and I had always done similar activities, but when she fell in love with theatre I knew I needed to find my own thing - ever since then, drumming has been my outlet for self expression. I was born and raised in Miami’s flamboyant culture. Even though I wasn’t fully comfortable naming myself as the “gay girl drummer” amongst my peers, I always felt I could be entirely me when behind my instruments.
As a 26 year-old, I continue to learn about myself, about others, and about my place in the world through this “soundmaker” lens. It is my most genuine (and often loudest) method to convey compassion, intentionality, and vulnerability to those that listen. I believe these to be pillars of self-love: a necessary ingredient for growth as a culture. Thankfully, self-love is contagious - just like when a groove hits hard.
My entry is a piece I made in response to the visceral reaction I had while watching Amanda Gorman perform her poem, “The Hill We Climb”, on Inauguration Day 2021. As she read her words I felt the weight lift from my shoulders which made room for the powerful realization that she was standing there against all odds, making this mark in history. I included an excerpt of her reciting the poem because I want to revisit that moment and remind myself that in fully embracing myself I can inspire others to do the same.