5 Fame Insights with Glee’s Heather Morris

LSY! founder Tim O’Shei onstage at Hard Rock Cafe in Niagara Falls USA with Glee star Heather Morris and young actress Ina Summers.

Millions of people love watching Heather Morris every week as Brittany S. Pierce on Glee. I’m one of them. But I feel pretty lucky to know Heather in another way – she’s my friend.

I met Heather four years ago when I was writing a story on backup dancers for Dance Spirit magazine. At the time, Heather was a dancer for Beyoncé. Though we live on opposite sides of the country, we kept in touch. We grabbed dinner in L.A. the next summer, and the year after that, Heather (by then one of the stars of Glee) came to the hometown of Live! Starring … You! – Buffalo, New York – to teach workshops with us.

On that trip to New York, Heather stayed with my family for five days and we got to spend a lot of time together. Here are five things I think everyone who loves Glee should know about the actress behind Brittany:

1. Fame isn’t her goal. During one of our Live! Starring … You! interview workshops, she told a group of preteens and teens, “To be humble and actually just do your job and not try to be famous, to me that’s the biggest thing you could possibly do.” For someone who’s becoming as famous as Heather is, that’s a pretty cool thing to hear. (Check out the video here.)

2. Being a celebrity has its downsides. Heather talked about how tricky it can be to build relationships when you’re a celebrity. Why? You never know who’s interested in you versus your job or celebrity status. “Meeting people, I almost don’t want them to know what I do,” Heather said. (You can watch the video of that conversation here.)

3. She’s not afraid to follow her heart — even when people think she’s wrong. Heather had a great job dancing for Beyoncé, but as she told American Cheerleader, eventually she “wasn’t really into it anymore.” So when Beyoncé asked her to go on a second world tour, Heather said no. Lots of people thought she was crazy. But in truth, Heather was just allowing her dreams to change. By following her heart, what was the worst thing that could happen? She could have failed as an actress. She didn’t, of course, but even if she had, crashing as an actress isn’t that big a deal. It happens all the time. “I wasn’t really worried,” she told me during a Live! Starring … You! program at Hard Rock Cafe. “If I failed as an actress, that just would have been my story.” (Check the video here.)

4. Heather wants to help people. My favorite moment – and Heather’s favorite, by far – during her week with Live! Starring … You! was a visit we made to the home of 13-year-old Briana Hansen. Briana has cystic fibrosis, a disease that fills her lungs with fluid and makes it difficult to breathe. The Make-A-Wish Foundation of Western New York had built a dance studio in Briana’s basement, and Heather showed up to dance to “Single Ladies” with Bri and her sister and cousins. (You can check out that video here. You can also hear what Bri and her sister Oliva thought of the experience here.)

5. Heather is a dreamer and a goal-setter — and she writes it down. Totally unplanned, during our Live! Starring … You! interview workshop Heather grabbed a posterboard and some markers and created a “dream board” to share with the students. It was a cool, close-up, touching moment when she shared the dream board with everyone and shared her wishes about family, her career, and more. (Get a glimpse of it here.)

Tim O’Shei
LSY! founder

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