Miyesha McGriff

Mental Health Check-In

Hello everyone,

Life has been pretty busy. We toured in French Guiana and had successful Rise seasons in both Washington DC & Memphis. We were preparing to tour to Wilson, North Carolina and Norfolk, Virginia, but unfortunately they were cancelled due to this COVID 19 Pandemic.  What a time to be alive.  In my lifetime Ive witnessed 9/11, wars, major natural disasters, and now a Pandemic.  So now, there is much time to try and do what I’ve wanted but lacked in time to do.  I’m sure I’ve mentioned this before but keeping a blog has been very challenging (clearly, I haven’t posted all year!). It’s hard to come up with content that you are willing to share with everyone. You ask yourself, ‘How personal am I willing to get’? On my social media, I’ve been posting a lot of great pictures and positivity.  Mostly to share and uplift everyone.  But, just as everyone else, my life isn’t perfect and especially now, its easy to drift mentally into those not-so positive places.  I created this blog to be honest with myself and with anyone who is reading (which I appreciate very much). So here comes the honesty.

During Christmas break, I realized that I wasn’t really myself. Work kept me so busy that I didn’t get to give my emotions the true TLC it needed. I had been down. Not like, I just feel a little sad, I mean like a cloud was following me everyday for a few months. It was beginning to effect me in many areas of my life. Work, relationships between people, and just in my general mood. Do you every just have those days where you don’t feel like yourself? Well, imagine that feeling everyday. Imagine being in a room full of people and no one notices a difference almost like you’re not even there. This was becoming my new normal.

For those who don’t know me, I’m usually a bubbly, caring, generous person. But feeling this way had left me depleted, alone, on edge, and somewhat closed off. I didn’t like feeling this way. But I knew that things would get better. First, I prayed about it. My next step, was to seek help. That’s right, I’m speaking to a therapist. When I tell you, my first session was like a breathe of fresh air. I talked about things I have never shared with people I feel closest to. I felt like someone cared (besides my closest family), I didn’t feel so alone.

I’ve continued with my sessions, and am really glad I have. I feel like my old self is coming back around.

Two things I have taken away from this experience is that:

1. My feelings are valid and its okay to feel. 

2. Whats not valid, is dismissing my feelings to be considerate to others.

Especially now, life can be hard and we don’t have all the answers. We won’t have all the answers and that’s okay.  But the main point of this post is to let everyone know, you know you! When you are not in tune with you, it’s okay to take a step back and talk to someone. Take care of YOU! Your feelings are valid. If it can’t be a closest friend, try therapy. They are there to help. No judgment, only non-biased guidance. If you felt like you had the flu, would you go see a doctor? What’s different with your mental health?…. think about it.

During this Pandemic, it is very easy to get lost in all that is going wrong.  I’ve noticed, I like my solitude. But when its mandatory, Its almost unbearable.  If you’re someone who needs help, please don’t miss this time to get it.  You are loved.

Dancingly yours,


This is 30!

Hello everyone,

I know I’ve been m.i.a. for awhile. But that’s only because I have been enjoying my
life and practicing being present in what I’m doing. Not too much has
changed since I last wrote. Let’s see, I just…

1.) completed my second season with Collage

2.) saw artistic and personal growth within myself

3.) TURNED 30! 

4.) performed at The Kennedy Center (no big deal lol)

All of the above are such amazing feats and accomplishments but I think the biggest to me had to be turning 30.

For most artist, turning 30 is scary. It’s basically the end of your career
right!?!?!? Not at all! I’ve never felt so confident in my body. I
understand things/movement differently than I ever have. Seeing the
growth and changes that I choose to make are more visible than ever
before; and I’m learning to really embrace and love me. This doesn’t mean that dancing has become easier… It just means that I’m embracing what I have AND understanding that I have to work harder to keep what I have! For example, growing up I never had to work on flexibility.  It was definitely something that came to me naturally.  BUT NOW… I definitely spend a little more time warming up and stretching before my usual day of activity.

Looking forward to this new decade of growth not just in movement but in Life, I have created a list of things I would like to accomplish or work on in my personal life.  I wont share them here, just because I am a firm believer that some things should remain private.  But I share this to say, take the time to write down what you want to see come to life!  Wish list, bucket list, goals lists, are real! When you take a moment to write things down, they are no longer a thought.  It is now a physical item now. Something that has become tangible.  You work harder for these things when they seem more attainable.  All it takes is to make a thought into an action!   

If there is anything I can say to you is this, as we get older we get
better. This is the wisdom/ maturity that only comes with age and
experience. Not just professional experience, but LIFE experience. I
don’t say this to say that young people don’t have wisdom, but there is a
different wisdom that is exuding from me these days. I can only credit
my experiences with this (and Gods life lessons of course). Embrace the
change, embrace the fear, because on the other side of those emotions is
growth and more enlightenment. We are all trying to live our best lives
and are at different stages. But one thing we all have in common… is
getting older.

Embrace the age, embrace the growth.

Love you guys,

Second Position

Hello everyone,

I hope you are having a refreshing summer! Try to stay hydrated and cool. It’s hot out there. I’ve been keeping pretty busy, as to why there has been so much time between post! I know there is much to catch you up on and I will try to update you as much as possible! Heads up, this will be a long post. 

First, CHINA! China was, how can I say this… an experience! The people had to be the most shocking for me. They were so intrigued with us as black people. They wanted to take pictures ALL THE TIME. But, not in a good way. Almost like we were a part of a circus. One day, we did find this little market and the people there were different. They called us African Queens and Kings. They thought we were so beautiful. One even reached and grabbed my faux locs (yes, I had Faux Locs this trip that I did myself might I add lol). After having a Solange moment, I realized they were just intrigued with something they had never seen before. Oh, they smoke cigarettes a lot in China! It’s so hard to breath and the air quality is terrible. One day, my roomie and I opened the blinds to our room and couldn’t see out! Almost all the hotels we stayed in were amazing (besides the time I found spiders in my bed). But beautiful! Very energy efficient! Below you will see a video of one of the hotels with a few other pics. I learned a few words too. These words were used on a daily and I kept them very close. Thanks to a church member, she sent me the need to know’s. It was a huge help (Thank you Mrs. Brenda)! We didn’t visit the touristy cities in China. We went to a lot of places that had maybe one English speaking person if that (these cities will be listed below as well). There wasn’t much time to explore as we performed every other day, And if we weren’t performing, we were traveling by train or plane. We traveled so much that I think I’ll be okay with not traveling for awhile lol.   

Here are a few words (just a few words. It was best to speak with your hands or just pull up Google translate):

Hello- Nî Hao

Yes- Shí (she)

No- méiyôu (pronounced Mayo, yes like mayonnaise lol)

Thank you- xièxiè (shay-shay)

English- yīngyû

The Cities visited:Note: we traveled for two days straight to get to China! Memphis-ATL-DC-LA-Shanghai Feb. 27- Mar. 1st. There was also a 13 hour time difference. 

Shanghai, Hainan, Wuhan, Changchun, Dalian, Nanning, Liuzhou, Pingxiang, NanChang, & Beihai

We returned to Liuzhou for our last show. Below was our route back to the states after a 20 day tour: Liuzhou to Beijing, Beijing to Dallas, Dallas to Memphis 

Once we returned, we were excited to sleep because we knew we had the time…. so we thought! The very next day, I got a call that we would leave in 3 days for NY for Two whole weeks! Now, I was extremely excited but jet lagged at the same time. When I tell you I was up at 4am everyday so confused on where I was.  One night, I was messaging my coworker and was telling her to come to my room thinking she could appear through my closet. Yeah, I was so confused. But when the day came to leave, I was packed and ready to go!

For those who don’t know, Collage had the amazing opportunity to perform Dougla, choreographed by Geoffrey Holder with Dance Theater of Harlem for their City Center season! What a dream! Those two weeks have to be a huge highlight of my career thus far.  To be around so many beautiful brown ballerinas and ballerinos…. there are NO words. We were received very well, and I even had some family and friends in the audience.  What an experience. Did I mention that I got to meet Carman De Lavalade?!?!?!? Oh yeah, the picture will be below for sure. Her presence, her knowledge, her wisdom, you just don’t know until you meet her. What a dream!

After the two weeks, we returned to Memphis to perform our last show of the season. With both the trip to China and New York, we bonded as a company and I felt closer to everyone more than I did before. We are truly a family and I’m so happy to be apart of this company!

Once the season ended, I headed straight home to Kansas City.  I was able to spend time with family and close friends. I worked a couple of jobs including Ailey Camp Missouri. Six weeks of teaching middle school aged kids.  They were long, exhausting days but so worth it! the kids worked so hard to apply themselves. These kids never danced before (most of them) and they had to perform at the Kauffman Center for Performing Arts! What a challenge but these kids were ready. They did such an amazing job! I miss the kids and their dedication. Hopefully I get this opportunity again next summer!

I’m back in Memphis, and season 2 is off to a great start! For my next post, I’ll release our tour schedule for the 2018-2019 season! Hope to see you while on tour. As always, any questions, comments, or just to say hello, shoot me an email! I appreciate you following my life journey. Until next time. 

Dancingly yours,

Dinner Menu on Flight to China!

Breakfast, which was also lunch and dinner


First nights dinner

Company at dinner

One of the theaters we performed in

Traditional Chinese Theater

Another theater in China

Lobby of hotel in Luizhou

A golden Dragon on our hotel wall

One of many cites while traveling to our next city.

Yellow Crane Tower Tour

Inside the Yellow Crane Tower

The Yellow Crane Tower

Company exploring in China

Myself & Wendy Whelan

The Company with Carmen De Lavalade

Myself with the Legendary Carmen De Lavalade

Behind the Scenes of Dougla

Costume backstage at City Center NYC

Collage at the DTH Gala

Some amazing friends on closing night of Dougla

Myself & Ingrid of DTH

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