When you listen to Georgia Schrubbe talk, it’s easy to forget that she’s only twenty-two. From her upbringing in Alabama to her travels through Cuba, she has a wonderful story to share and this is only the beginning. Meeting Georgia is it’s own reward—with a permanent smile on her face, she’s easy to talk to about all of her passions and projects.
A graduate of the College of Charleston with a Degree in Communications, Georgia like so many others, fell in love with her alma mater’s city. She attributes her self-described nerdy personality to her passion for reading and writing. She always brought a book with her wherever she went as a child and even had a reading “intervention” in third grade.
“I had to go to the principle’s office in third grade because I kept reading the first three Harry Potter books (the only ones that were out at the time), over and over again,” she laughs. All the reading and a few years of professional freelance writing inspired this young talent to author her first published collection, There is a Live Wire in The Shower and Other Concerns About Life in Cuba
With a focus on success without limits, Georgia sat down and put together her ebook. The short collection of blogs/essays is a compilation of her stories documenting seven months spent in Cuba over the course of two years.
Georgia drew inspiration from women traveling the globe finding meaning in through their personal experiences and interactions.
“Everyone has a story and everyone experiences that story. We just tell our stories differently.” she said with her patented warmth and smile.
Cuba holds a very special place in her heart due to falling in love with the culture (and a Cuban citizen). She is considering writing a full-length novel about Havana and admits she is not sure whether to write it as a non-fiction book or the cheesiest romance novel ever. Either way, it’s easy to see she is attracted to the romanticism in Cuban, and to some extent, Charleston culture.
Though she is vocal about writing and traveling, she’s carved out a space for herself in Charleston’s dance scene.
When tapped about her first impressions of dance, Georgia retorted with, “The first time I saw a ballet performance, I literally peed on myself,” she says. “It was some community production in my hometown in Alabama, and I was so enthralled that I couldn’t be bothered to get up to go to the bathroom.”
Shortly after that nearly fatally embarrassing episode, she enrolled in ballet and studied with an intense fervor for the next decade, dancing in a local pre-professional company and spending summers studying in San Francisco, New York, and around the Southeast. When she began at the College of Charleston in 2009, she performed with the Charleston Dance Project, Charleston Ballet Theatre and for the College of Charleston’s Dance Department
Shortly after beginning school for Charleston, she discovered her newest love – Salsa dancing. She was immediately enchanted (but fortunately, managed not to wet herself over it).
“I’m a ballerina gone wild,” she says. “I started to go out to Salsa nights, take classes, go to congresses and then it snowballed and I suddenly found myself in other cities, states, and countries, for Salsa.”
That’s when I realized how quick on her feet she was – like a bird. This conversation was a dance to her – an engaging interplay of words and interactions on the dance floor of Santi’s Mexican Restaurant. It would seem that she communicates through everything that she does; from her voice to her body, all in tune.
She recently performed in Robbi Kenney’s “Strings and Salsa.” at the Charleston Music Hall. The show, a tapestry of intertwined performance arts, combined in an event unlike any other performed in Charleston. The blend of dance, Latin jazz and string instruments created a flow of energy the resonated throughout the theater. By the end of the evening, much like the theatrics of Dirty Dancing, the audience leaped from their seats and took over the walkways and stage to become active participants in the production.
“I’ve never been in a show like that where the ‘fourth wall’ was broken so well,” says Georgia, “It was magical.”
What always stood out for me is Georgia’s commitment to the community, not just as a performer. She is always volunteering or working for local festivals and events. When asked why she is so involved, her response was simple, “I’m crafty and resourceful. I find things that I want to do and I think outside the box to find opportunities to accomplish those goals.”
She has worked the box office for Piccolo Spoleto, is the current marketing director for Shrimp and Grits Charleston, and volunteered at the 2014 Charleston Wine + Food festival.
“Sometimes there is a trade off, but volunteering time helps you feel part of something which make the experience mean more to you.”
When asked what’s next for her career, a flow of exciting ideas rolled off her tongue. She is currently developing a new fitness concept, a slew of quirky book ideas (“The Magic of Yoga”—a book of Harry Potter-themed yoga meditations for teens), and plans to launch a Salsa dance wear line this fall for women. The goal of the dance wear line is to focus on helping women with confidence and body appearance issues. She found when teaching Zumba Fitness that women were more concerned with how they looked than just having fun with the practice.
“I want women to be proud of what their body can do rather than how you look doing it.”
My interaction with Georgia led me to think that perhaps love, too, is beyond the boundaries of nations, social status, etc. How do the rules of how one is supposed to act get in the way of what you really want to do?
“I’ve always lived by the thought that the worst anyone can ever do is say ‘No,’” she says, “And you’d be surprised by how often people say yes.”
Georgia Schrubbe with be performing at the next installment of “Strings and Salsa” on November 21 at The Charleston Music Hall.
Follow Georgia’s adventures through her writing at www.georgiaschrubbe.com or go to Charleston Havana Nights at Voodoo on Sunday nights and say hello. You will mostly likely get a smile and a hug.
Compassion is the innate ability to draw from your creativity and passion and touch the lives of others. It is a centuries old philosophy followed by a few individuals that are blessed with the ability to see beyond black and white and make that ultimate connection that defines greatness. Sometimes you meet someone that exemplifies the truth actions of compassion. Meet Georgia and you will understand.