Imagine going from -30 degrees Celsius winters to dancing in the California sunshine. Well, Kandis Mak, part dancer/choreographer/actress, did just that and more. A Canadian-turned-Californian, Kandis took a figurative and literal leap of faith to pursue her dreams as a dancer and headed down to the City of Angels on a dance scholarship after high school.
Since then, she has spent three years as a featured dancer for Bette Midler’s The Showgirl Must Go On in Las Vegas, music videos for Destiny’s Child, Queens of the Stone Age, Silversun Pickups and Ellie Goulding, and has appeared in these Hollywood blockbusters: The Social Network and A Very Harold & Kumar 3D Christmas. Did we mention that she’s a busy lady? Let us catch our breath here.
Because she’s the perfect example of someone who has made L.A. style her own, we grabbed a chance to feature her as today’s Wantering Tastemaker.
How has the City of Angeles been treating you?
It has its ups and down but I wouldn’t trade it for the world. Where else can you pursue your dreams with such reckless abandon? I mean, everyone in LA is a dreamer…keeps things interesting.
What is your personal motto or mantra?
I don’t really have one, but if I had to come up with one on the spot it might be something like “what doesn’t kill you, makes you stronger” or “just keep on keepin’ on”. I’m a big believer in staying the course, tenacity, persistence, and never giving up.
You get the luxury of working across multiple industries - dance, choreography, entertainment, fitness - how has this helped to define your personal style?
Firstly, I wouldn’t call it a luxury - more of a necessity. When you work for yourself, you do have the luxury of making your own schedule and choosing your own projects, but when the work is dry you have to branch out into other things. That’s how I got into more acting, choreography and fitness.
How this has defined my personal style is funny, because it’s done the exact opposite; it has undefined my style! Because I get to play so many roles in my life, I get to dress and style myself in so many ways. From 40’s chic one day to glamour girl the next and fitness maven the next…it’s so much fun to re-invent yourself on a daily basis!
What has been the coolest experience you’ve had thus far?
Definitely doing the Target Kaleidoscopic Spectacular art installation at the Standard Hotel in NYC. Also, choreographing the American Music Awards for Kelly Clarkson. Oh, and co-starring on Reba McEntire’s show Malibu Country!
If you had the chance to work with anyone in the world, who would it be and why?
Probably James Franco. His work ethic and the projects he chooses really inspire me. Plus I love that he’s such an academic…sort of a renaissance man. Plus he’s cute!
What are three secrets about yourself?
1. I hate mayo.
2. I’d like to be a citizen of the world.
3. I grind my teeth at night! (really hard!)
If you could give one piece of advice to your 14 year-old self, what would it be?
That you’re OK. You’re pretty enough, smart enough, good enough…and that YOU ARE enough. And not to worry so much.
What can we look forward to seeing you in next?
The CW’s 90120 and an upcoming Heineken commercial!
Wanna discover clothes that you’ll love? Shop Kandis’ easy breezy California look, along with thousands of other trendsetters, on Wantering! Sign up now.