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Behind "The_Rbrooks"

What makes me...well me. Read my story ⬇

A girl sits in a field of dandelions with the Rocky Mountains in the distance. She wears a cream floral spring dress, a floral headscarf, and hexagon brown sunglasses, gazing into the distance.

I always knew I wanted to be creative. And famous. 😅 The first career I ever dreamed of was being a princess. When I realized that wasn't an option, I set my sights on becoming an art teacher.

Sadly, I can't draw—at least not well enough to teach others. But funny enough, I didn't land too far from that dream. Flash forward 20-some years later: I'm 30, living in Denver, Colorado, and working as a content creator, photographer, and theatre educator. Looking back, I'm in complete awe of my journey and how it led me here. Let me share my story with you.


I had a pretty normal upbringing in a small town just outside of Green Bay, Wisconsin. My parents had regular jobs, we lived comfortably, and I did typical kid things. But in retrospect, my childhood was anything but average. We lived on a horse farm, my father was a noted public speaker and author, and I competed in equestrian show jumping while falling in love with theatre and music. As Rachel Gullickson in the Pulaski Community School District (known as the polka capital of the country—at least to Pulaski), I was the quirky theatre girl, student council president, and a bundle of undiagnosed social anxiety and insecurities. With a desperate need to be liked, I stumbled a lot.

When my senior year hit, I was more determined than ever to leave my small town. I went to school half-days and spent the other half focused on singing, acting, and dance lessons, preparing for college auditions. When I decided to continue my education at the American Musical and Dramatic Academy (AMDA) in New York City, I knew it would be life-changing—and it was.

College Years:

The first time I ever set foot in NYC was for orientation at AMDA, and instantly, I felt an irreplaceable energy that I wanted to be part of. The years I spent in the concrete jungle shaped me profoundly. Although a lot of "Rachel Gullickson from Pulaski" remains, this is where "Rachel Brooks" was born.

Despite ongoing insecurities and anxiety—heightened in a performance-based school—I had to maintain a façade of composure. In many unspoken ways, AMDA taught me that my passion for theatre and storytelling didn't require Broadway to be successful. This realization propelled my journey in ways I can't fully credit. The theatre professionals, both good and bad, pushed me to grow, making me the educator I am today. I also met incredible people who will always hold a special place in my heart.

Leaving NYC after my conservatory program was bittersweet. Though I loved the city, I knew my 20-year-old self wasn't ready to take it on. So, I packed up eleven suitcases and headed back to Packer Country.

The "Twenties:"

Returning to Wisconsin, I was driven to create theatre. I worked up and down the Lake Michigan border as a choreographer, director, singer, dancer, and actress. Living out a theatre dream in the middle of Wisconsin brought me immense joy, especially because of the people I met and the iconic roles I played like Mary Poppins and Eliza Doolittle. I also discovered my love for teaching young actors.

However, my theatre passion didn't pay the bills, so I turned my summer college job into a full-time career. For many years, I co-managed LOFT in Green Bay, learning critical life lessons and meeting colorful characters, as one usually does working retail, who enriched my life.

Through many ups and downs of discovering myself in my twenties in Wisconsin, I met my best friend and future husband, Steven. Together, we built the life of two young adults in Green Bay, but I knew I wasn't meant to stay in Wisconsin.

The "Late" Twenties:

Two years after Steven and I started flourishing our relationship, he asked me to be his wife. Little did we know—our 2020 wedding would come with the extra challenge of the pandemic. Planning a wedding during the "COVID years" brought a lot of changes to my life. Our wedding was both the happiest and most stressful event of my life, forcing me to grow up in a lot of ways.

But on the positive side, this time in my life brought me closer to two loves and passions—Steven and photography. Being a bride-to-be honestly kick-started my creative journey as a content creator. I made Steven take pictures of me EVERYWHERE. During our engagement, Steven and I developed this new venture as a creative outlet and new hobby.

The pandemic was hard for so many reasons—being furloughed and having creative projects put on hold while planning what was supposed to be "my dream wedding" drained my soul. Just months after our October 2020 wedding, Steven and I packed up our cats and moved to Denver, Colorado, with a little money and a lot of drive to build our dream life.

Thirty, Flirty, and Thriving:

So where am I now? In a pretty blessed place. I get to live my passions every day as a part-time theatre educator and part-time content creator. Although this alternate 9-5 lifestyle is challenging, it's extremely rewarding. I correspond with brands, create engaging content, and connect with a community of fellow artistic souls.

At night, I head to Boulder, Colorado, to my second home, the Actor's Academy for Performing Arts, where I direct and choreograph productions that often bring me to tears because I am so immensely proud of the young actors who grow and impress me daily. Both of these paths bring me immense joy and sometimes heartbreak because of how deeply I care.

This new rebrand, bringing Curate + Create to life as a business, has been a long time coming, and I'm excited about this journey. Read more about the full picture here! I can't wait to share even more with you.

I'm so happy that you're here! All my Love,

-Rachel Brooks


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