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Nikka Graff Lanzarone

BIOGRAPHY

Nikka Graff Lanzarone is a Los Angeles native, but she decided somewhere around the age of three that she HAD to move to New York and become a dancer. That decision was cemented at six when she saw Jerome Robbins Broadway, her first Broadway show. Things would NEVER be the same again.

It’s a natural continuation of the family business - Nikka is part of a tight-knit clan of artists and entertainers. Her parents are singer/actress/Grammy Nominee Ilene Graff, star of “Mr. Belvedere,” and composer/arranger/conductor Ben Lanzarone. Screenwriter/director Todd Graff is her uncle, and accomplished author Laurie and Tony Award winner Randy Graff are cousins.

After spending her childhood singing in the prestigious Los Angeles Children’s Chorus (touring the world, which was pretty fun), her high school years at the Hamilton Academy of Music (learning so much original choreography it would make your head spin), and her summers at Stagedoor Manor in the Catskills (doing tons of shows and making the best friends a girl could ask for), there was no turning back. She had devoted her life to theatre and dance.

Nikka attended The Boston Conservatory for college, earned her BFA and moved to NYC immediately upon graduation. Since then, she has been lucky enough to work in town on workshops and shows, all over the country at various regional theatres, Off-Broadway in the revised "Seussical" at The Lucille Lortel Theatre, and finally land on Broadway (twice!)- as Marisa in "Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown" and in her ultimate-dream-come-true-beyond-wildest-dreams-dream-role: Velma Kelly in "Chicago".

ACCOMPLISHMENTS

Was the youngest person to ever play Velma Kelly on Broadway in "Chicago". Originated the role of Marisa in the Broadway production of "Women on the Verge of a Nervous Breakdown."

FIRST THING THAT COMES TO MIND WHEN YOU SAY “CAPEZIO”

Of course, high quality, long-lasting dancewear, but on a more personal note: My very first email address! We first got the internet in my house when I was eight years old, and I was allowed to pick the screen name I wanted. Since, of COURSE, I was going to be a professional dancer someday, I went with the only name that could reflect that: CapezioNik!  Yeah, I’m kind of a dance nerd. I totally admit it.

FAVORITE CAPEZIO ITEM

I have had the same big Capezio dance bag since I was twelve years old (and that was a VERY LONG TIME AGO). It’s still in great shape, has been all over the world with me, and continues everywhere with me to this day!

BIGGEST PIECE OF ADVICE FOR OTHER DANCERS

Know who you are and what your goals are first, then worry about the rest of it. Stay true to what you really love to do- your strength will be rewarded. Create your own opportunities and stick up for yourself! Remember that it really is all about the love, and the relationships you create in your career will be the things you carry with you.

UNUSUAL FACT/LOVE/HABIT/GOAL/ABILITY THAT PEOPLE MIGHT NOT KNOW

I moonlight as a personal stylist! I love to help people put together the perfect outfits for their daily lives, auditions, special occasions, anything and everything!

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