McKenzie Morales is an American dancer, model and student. She is best recognized for her features on the Lifetime aired American reality television series ‘Dance Moms’ and for her work with the Ohio based dance school ‘Candy Apple's Dance Center’ (CADC). McKenzie forayed into dancing at around eight years of age and garnered fame performing on ‘Dance Moms’. Over the years she has thrived in making her niche in the field performing and garnering first position in several solo and duet competitions. She has also performed with JC's Broadway Dance Academy, CADC, Dolce Dance Studio and The Rage. Brilliant performances of McKenzie earned her several regional dance titles including Regional Junior Miss Showbiz 2014. She has also won National Junior Miss Showbiz 2012. McKenzie had the honour of performing at Mexico's prestigious Gala de Danza. Her rising popularity as dancer has also reflected in her social media accounts, particularly in her Instagram account ‘dancing_kenzie’ and her YouTube channel ‘dancergrl2002’ where she has gained considerable following and viewership.
Early Life & Career
McKenzie commenced her journey in dancing at the age of eight. Over the years, she has participated in several solo competitions and won first position in many. These include performing jazz to ‘All About Me’ at Revolution (Fresno) under category Age 8 & Under White Solos in 2011; performing lyrical to ‘Fields of Gold’ at MOVE (Fresno) under the category of Junior Competitive Solos in 2012; and performing contemporary to ‘I Didn't Know My Own Strength’ at Sheer Talent (Fresno) under category Teen Solos in 2017 among others. Among the duet competitive performances she gave along with her brother, dancer Gavin Morales, the two garnered first place performing jazz to the track ‘Bats and Cats’ at Starpower (Las Vegas) under category Age 9-11 Power Duet/Trios and at Thunderstruck (Fresno) under category Junior Shining Star Duet/Trios in 2013; and to track Bonnie vs. Clyde in 2014 at Showbiz (San Jose), Showstopper (Anaheim), Starpower (Fresno) and StarQuest (San Jose) under the categories Junior Diamond Duet/Trios, Junior Competitive Duet/Trios, Age 9-11 Power Duet/Trios and Select Junior Duet/Trios respectively.
The dance titles earned by McKenzie includes Regional Junior Miss StarQuest and National Junior Miss Showbiz in 2012; Regional Junior Miss PrimeTime, Regional Junior Rainbow Elite Starz DOY and Regional Junior Miss Showbiz in 2013; Regional Junior Miss Showbiz and Regional Junior Miss Dance Troupe in 2014; and Regional Teen Miss Starpower in 2017. The dance schools that she remained associated with at different points of time include CADC, Dolce Dance Studio, Shirley Winters Ballet, The Rage Entertainment Complex and JC's Broadway Dance Academy.
McKenzie featured in the June 19, 2013, released short music video ‘Postino: I Love It’ written and directed by Will Kindrick. She gained fame appearing as guest dancer for CADC in the Lifetime aired reality television series ‘Dance Moms’ in its 4th season in 2014. That year she was also featured as budding dance star in Spring/Summer edition of Starbound Magazine. Her mother Jo Anne later mentioned on her Tumblr account that McKenzie was bullied by a CADC mom and Abby and that she along with McKenzie and Gavin will not return to Dance Moms. McKenzie left ‘Dance Moms’ sometime in the 5th season, however made a comeback to the show as a JC's Broadway Dance Academy member. According to some sources, over the years she has featured in ten episodes of ‘Dance Moms’ starting from 2014 to 2017. These include the episodes ‘Chloe vs. Kendall: Round 2’ (2014), ‘Hollywood Here We Come, Part 1’ (2014), ‘The New Maddie?’ (2015), and ‘All Choked Up’ (2017) among others. McKenzie along with her brother received invitation to perform at the prestigious Gala de Danza in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico. There she performed with noted professional dancers like Gillian Murphy, Qi Haun, Marcelino Sambe, Brooklyn Mack and Misty Copeland.
Rising fame of McKenzie as a talented dancer has also garnered her considerable popularity in different social media platforms. This is palpable from her Instagram account ‘dancing_kenzie,’ which has over 89K followers and her YouTube channel ‘dancergrl2002’ (Also known as ‘mckenzie morales’) has more than 3.9K).
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Family & Personal Life
McKenzie Morales was born on December 26, 2002, in California, US, to JoAnne Morales and Scott Morales. Her brother Gavin is also a dancer known for his work at Dolce Dance Studio, at the CADC and features on seasons 4 and 5 of ‘Dance Moms’.
McKenzie has mentioned jazz as her favourite dance style and ‘Hot Like Wow’ as her favourite solo. Her friends from the dancing field include Gino Cosculluela, Nick Daniels, Zack Torres, Keara Nichols, Maddie Ziegler, Chloe Lukasiak, Evan Gorbell, and Alyssa Chi among others.
She looks up to Sam Cantoria as a great dancer and once mentioned that given a choice to perform a duet with any dancer in the world, she would select Cantoria.
When she was ten years of age McKenzie was diagnosed with anxiety and later in 2015, it was diagnosed that she developed an eating disorder. When not dancing, McKenzie likes to swim, do stretching or watch a film. She is also fond of turtles.