PDC: Talk about your dance background and what brought you to being a Dallas Mavericks Dancer.
ASHLEY: I started dancing at two, ballet and tap and then I went to the Classen School of Advanced Studies and Performing Arts in Oklahoma City and I was a dance major there 6th-9th grade. Then out of high school, I made the Oklahoma City Thunder’s Thunder Girls and danced on that team for two years. One of the cool experiences from being on Thunder was getting to travel to Japan. Then I wanted to take the next step in my dancing career, so I moved to Dallas to try out for the Dallas Mavericks Dancers and now I’m in my third year on this team.
PDC: What are some of your favorite memories from your first couple of years here with the Mavs Dancers?
ASHLEY: My very favorite memory was actually making the team. We got a letter and I opened it with Elise and Emily and I made it. A couple of my other favorite memories were going to China last summer with the Mavs Dancers and then making the cover of the 2018 Dallas Mavericks Dancers calendar.
PDC: That leads into the next question. So you’ve made the team again this summer and are now one of the senior members of the team and a leader on the team, how were you able to help the rookies during the calendar shoot?
ASHLEY: We have a lot of rookies this year, so I was able to help them with their hair, makeup and tanning before they really accustomed to the team and how to get fully prepared and then I had shot with Roman (Dallas Mavericks Dancers calendar photographer Roman Pena) for The Hot Issue and the Summer Edition, so I was able to help some of the girls out with a few tips that would help them in their first time of doing a photo shoot like that one.
PDC: Did you enjoy your time on your third Mavs Dancers calendar shoot?
ASHLEY: Yeah, I had a lot of fun. I was out in the middle of the resort’s pool on the rocks and I was comfortable with the photographers, so it was perfect. I had the morning shoot so I had to get there around 4 a.m., and my shoot was over by lunch. It was a really fun day.
PDC: Describe what the next month or so was like leading up to the Mavs Dancers Calendar Release Party.
ASHLEY: It’s always really nerve wracking before the calendar comes out because we literally don’t see it until everyone else does. The Mavs will do a little preview video or snippet before the reveal, so you kind of get a feel for how you look, but until it’s printed, you don’t know how you’re going to look.
PDC: This year’s release party was at the EIGHTEEN|76 club at the American Airlines Center and you were on the cover of the calendar. How did you find out and what was the initial feeling?
ASHLEY: They announced me first since I was cover. I was standing next to my best friend Janae and it was just awesome. This was also the first time that my parents were there at the release party and it was a great moment. Janae was right by my side and she was so supportive and it was a moment I’ll never forget.
PDC: Moving on the season, what type of leadership role do you have being one of the senior members?
ASHLEY: This year we have three three-year vets and we are the longest tenured dancers on the team. It’s really different than the last couple of years and I’ve had to step up my role including counting during the games, helping the girls with cleans and really jsut having a really good vibe on game nights. We are super positive this year and we really want all the rookies to have a good year. I love everyone on the team and it’s been a great year.
PDC: Talk about the Mavs’ annual Seats for Soldiers game and what it’s like from a dancer’s perspective.
ASHLEY: We flew from DFW down to San Antonio along with some of the Mavs ManiAACs and members of the Mavs staff. We picked up the wounded soldiers and they were the coolest people ever. We got to talk to them on the plane when the flew back to Dallas with us for the game that night. We signed calendars and posters for them after the game and I had few tears that day. That is one of my favorite game nights of every year and it was really fun to be a part of that day this year.
PDC: The Mavs Dancers also recently paid a visit to a local children’s hospital. Talk about that.
ASHLEY: We partnered up with Headbands of Hope and they made Dallas Mavericks-colored headbands for cancer patients. We went to the hospital and handed out headbands to the girls and Mavs baseball caps to the boys, met the doctors and it was a really amazing day to give back. That was actually my first Dallas Mavericks hospital visit and there were tears that day, too.
PDC: Now to some of the fun stuff, what are some of your favorite foods?
ASHLEY: Steak is my favorite food.
PDC: Do you have any favorite restaurants?
PDC: What are some of your favorite movies?
PDC: What about favorite TV shows?
PDC: What would be your dream vacation locale?
ASHLEY: Fiji. I would love to go to Fiji. Barcelona, Venice, Bora Bora, really anywhere warm. I’ve never gone skiing or anything, as long as it’s warm and I’m relaxing
PDC: Last question, once your dance career is over, you can have any job in the world, what would it be?
ASHLEY: I would like to own my own event company and have weddings, charity events and corporate events. I would like to have a big venue and be able to coordinate all of it.
See ASHLEY in the 2017 PDC Summer Edition in the PHOTO GALLERY below:
PDC Summer Edition 2017 Cover