We are so excited to feature another fabulous woman as our #FEMMEFEATUREFRIDAY! This week is all about Hannah Douglass. She is a huge role model to so many young girls around the world, and she has a remarkable resume that will make anyone want to dream big and go after their biggest goals just like she did. On top of that, this multitalented and incredibly professional woman continues to prove that you can stay sweet, caring, generous, and humble while reaching success in the industry.
Hannah has been working professionally in the Los Angeles dance community for over ten years. She has appeared live with artists such as Beyonce, Jay-Z, Britney Spears, Big Sean, The Weeknd, and many more. Her notable television credits include Glee, the Super Bowl, Dancing with the Stars, My Crazy-Ex Girlfriend, and multiple major award show performances including the Grammys and the Oscars. Hannah can also be seen dancing in feature films like La La Land, What to Expect When You’re Expecting, Footloose, Iron Man 2, and Dance Flick.
Hannah is a perfect example of what YGTG stands for. She is all about empowering women, as she often works with her sister Audrey Douglass and has toured the world with a group of strong independent women on three of Beyonce's major tours: “The Mrs. Carter Show”, “On the Run” tour with Jay-Z, and the “Formation World Tour”. She vouches for every female around her and she 100% believes in community. She is that kind of woman who creates a loving and supportive energy whereever she goes and we adore her for that. Hannah is also an excellent teacher and she feels it's extremely important to pass down the knowledge she has gained from her many years as a professional in the world of dance. We are so glad we got to ask her a few questions about her journey in the entertainment business. Enjoy all of the wonderful advice she has to give our YGTGirls!
You have been in the entertainment industry for years and years, and you lead such a successful career. Not only is that really impressive, but what is even more beautiful is how you have remained the same sweet, hardworking and humble woman that first moved to LA years ago. What should someone expect when they first move out here to pursue their dreams? How can they remain true to themselves?
Oh my god moving here feels like a lifetime ago! First of all, you can expect to work really, really hard. Feel good hard. You can also expect things NOT to go at all how you expected . My dance journey has been an incredible ride, consistently sending me in directions I never imagined. Everyone has different methods of manifesting, and different techniques for goal setting and conquering their dreams, and I think I am a bit untraditional in that I never set any specific, tangible goals. That may sound scary, but I knew I always wanted (and still want) to be apart of something bigger than me, and I remained open. I was after a feeling, not how any job looked on paper, and not anyone else's job. I've remained in that mindset since day one, which eliminates any need to feel competitive with others because it is such an authentic and personal journey. I never looked at a job and said "that's mine". I followed what felt good and what felt right for me, and not anyone else. I would say to the newcomers, surround yourself with passionate, positive, and like minded people, and never judge or bring anyone around you down. You're all on the same crazy journey, and there is room for everyone in this industry. Follow your gut, and work hard because you love what you do. We are blessed to be paid for our passion!
Hannah, you are such a wonderful role model to so many young girls. If you had to give your younger self some useful advice, what would that be?
I would tell myself to slow down, breathe, and not take everything so personally. Don't worry about what's next, just enjoy the ride.
We absolutely love how strongly you feel about supporting all the women in your life. Tell us why woman empowerment is so important to you?
I am a proud "girl's" girl through and through. Always have been, always will be. It frustrates me when other women say "oh yeah, no I can't do girls, I don't hang out with other girls really" or "no I'm definitely not a girl's girl" - as if those things were negative or less desirable qualities. Also that's a bit of a self reflection unfortunately, and I would love to see that pattern broken. I love women. I love to relate to women, and celebrate women, and see women succeed. I was raised that way and that is my nature. I think a woman's capacity to balance empathy and badassery is incredible. I have a sister in the industry as well, and people always say to us "oh you must be so competitive - that must be hard", which always blows our minds. She's my biggest support system and vice versa. Additionally, I think finding common ground with women from every walk of life is one of the most thrilling adventures of all.
We all love Beyoncé (duh)! What inspires you the most about working with her and such a huge team of women?
Beyoncé is one of a kind because she allows every woman around her to be one of a kind as well. As simple as that sounds, unfortunately that is a rarity in this industry. Because Beyonce is so confident with what she brings to the table as a woman, you can feel that she wants the women around her to feel like their best self as well. She will even ask "do you feel beautiful in that costume? Do you feel like yourself?". She brings in women from every part of the world, all shapes, sizes, and skin tones, and she celebrates them. It's incredible. It all starts from the top, and as a result of her empowerment and encouragement, she is consistently surrounded by a badass group of confident females and shelling out iconic performances.
Although the tour life can be glamorous at times, it is also very hard physically, mentally, and emotionally. How do you find peace and balance when needed?
Everyone on tour knows I'm the queen of Irish goodbyes. As much as I love to go out and have a good time, when I check out, I check out, and I will be right back in my hotel room with room service and HGTV. I love being with all the girls, they have become my sisters, but I also take solace in being alone, whether it be with a coffee by myself in the morning, or a glass of wine in my hotel robe on the balcony at night.
What is your definition of a YGTGgirl?
A YGTGgirl is living her truest, most unapologetic life. She is kind, compassionate, and confident, and she understands the beauty in encouraging those qualities in every girl she meets along her journey.