Julie Sanchez leads classes in barre, dance, cardio, and Pilates, but did you know she once spent a year playing Princess Jasmine on a Disney cruise? Discover more about her Disney days, favorite karaoke song, and life before lululemon Studio. 

Growing Up

1. I come from a tight-knit family. I think it’s because my mom is Italian and my dad is Cuban, and family is important in each culture. I have an older and younger sister, and a younger brother. The four of us are very close.

2. My introduction to dance came when I took my first class at age 2. I remember loving the recitals, getting my hair done, and the daddy-daughter dances.

3. I’ve always been a performer. I used to put on karaoke performances for my family. My rendition of New York New York always brought the house down.

4. I got my start in front of the camera when I was little, appearing in commercials for Macy's, Verizon, and Subway. I also modeled for Bloomingdales, Target, Macy’s, JC Penny, and a bunch of other brands.

5. I’m not that coordinated when it comes to sports, especially if there’s a ball involved. I played basketball, softball, and soccer growing up but quit them all by middle school.

6. High school was unique. I attended a vocational school for dance starting sophomore year, but for half the day. I’d start at my regular high school near home, take a van 30 minutes to my next school, and take dance lessons for the rest of the day. Then, I’d go to my dance studio from 4-7. Looking back, it was a lot.

7. After high school, I went to George Mason in Virginia but transferred to Rutgers after my sophomore year. I liked it there, but I was racking up student loans and didn’t want to be in debt my whole life.

8. I finished a four-year school in two years because Rutgers didn’t accept any of my transfer credits and I had to start over. But I'm very goal oriented and made it my goal to graduate on time. I was commuting from home at the time, but pretty much lived in my car because I would spend all day on campus. Those two years feel like a blur but I graduated on time.

Disney and Beyond

9. The first few months after college were a grind. I spent most of my time in Manhattan auditioning for modern dance companies, attending summer programs, and doing anything to get exposure. To pay the bills, I hosted at a seafood restaurant near my parent's home in New Jersey and babysat.

10. Auditions were frustrating. I kept making the final round and would be up against one or two other girls, but would never get the part. I finally had enough and decided I needed a change.

11. My next audition was for Disney Cruise Lines and I booked it. For the next three years, I played a bunch of characters including Belle from Beauty and the Beast, Jesse from Toy Story, and Princess Jasmine from Aladdin. It was so much fun and I met a bunch of great people.

12. Despite spending most of three years on a cruise ship, I really want to go on another Disney Cruise. My kids would love it and it’d be really cool to see how it feels to be a guest.

Introduction to Fitness

13. I became a barre teacher after taking just one first barre class. I was back in New York City looking for a new way to stay in shape. I saw a friend from college was teaching barre, so I attended a class and they asked me to audition. The audition itself was taking a class, and then they had me speak on the mic and make sure I sounded good. I’m a quick learner and had experience speaking to groups from my time at Disney so I got the job.

14. I discovered that I really enjoyed teaching barre. In a way, it was another way of performing and let me combine my dance background with choreography at the barre. Plus, I love making playlists. I began picking up any shifts I could get and before long, I was focused on teaching and stopped auditioning for dance companies.

15. My first experience with lululemon Studio was in 2017 when I was shown a very early version of the Mirror by a friend who worked there. I immediately freaked out about how cool it was. I have been a trainer since its launch in 2018 and I love it. I occasionally miss the energy of a live class and having bodies in the room, but this is my dream job.

More About Me

16. I met my husband at a bar during Labor Day weekend in 2016 and we got married in 2019. We now have two kids, a two-and-a-half-year-old boy, and an eight-month-old girl. And yes, I am very sleep-deprived.

17. My go-to Karaoke song is Dani California by the Red Hot Chili Peppers, though I can always get down to a Taylor Swift song.

18. I listen to Drake while programming my classes. There’s something about his music that gets me in that mode.

19. My idea of a great night: Staying home, opening up a nice bottle of nice red wine after the kids go to sleep, and watching a movie.

20. I love Bravo. I’m currently watching Real Housewives of New Jersey, though Miami is my favorite all-time show. It’s a very guilty pleasure and I can’t get enough of it.

Ready to work out with Julie? Choose a class from her Trainer Spotlight and start moving.

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