Dance is not for the faint of heart, or the scatter-brained for that matter. Just ask Jacquelyne Jay Boe, a company member of Hope Stone Dance and Frame Dance Productions. "A dancer living in Houston has to be organized for scheduling purposes," she explains. "A dancer has to be able to making a living, and be able to train, and be in rehearsals. They also have to love what they do." In addition to her work with both Hope Stone and Frame Dance, Jacquelyne also makes room for independent projects, which brings her total dance time to roughly 25 hours a week.
Since moving back to Houston after receiving her BFA from the University of Oklahoma, Jacquelyne has had the opportunity to work with Erin Reck, Teresa Chapman, and Alex Soares; she will next appear in Cori Miller's latest dance piece, which will be featured in Dance Month at the Kaplan Theatre's Houston Choreographers X6.
She's also been choreographing her own dances, including What Lies in Wonder, her first evening-length concert. Wonder premiered at last year's Houston Fringe Festival and ended up winning the award for Best Original Dance. Filled with ominous sprites, haunting trance music, and emotive movement, Jacquelyne crafted a brooding fairytale of addiction, love, and the power of forgiveness.
"I was drawn to the subject of addiction because of a personal relationship that I dealt with in my life," she says. "I felt the only way to get through that situation was to make art from it." Here's to hoping we get to see more of her personal dance narratives in the near future.
What she does: "I usually tell people that I'm an artist, and particularly a dance artist. I've always been drawn to dance since I was little, so I think of it as what I do as a person. Then I proceed to tell them about my account management job at an advertising firm that supplements my dancer and choreographer career."
Why she likes it: For Jacquelyne, dance art was not so much a creative hobby as a way of processing and understanding the world. "I was diagnosed as dyslexic in the second grade," she says. "The two things I excelled at were visual art and dancing, and those things made sense to me as a kid. That's why I'm drawn to dance - it comes to me naturally."
What inspires her: As evidenced by her work What Lies in Wonder, Jacquelyne draws inspiration from the stories and emotional responses of her personal life. "I'm a firm believe that anything can inspires," she explains. "It's more about what I'm interested in at the moment, and inspiration can come at any time."
If not this, then what: "I'm learning photography at the moment. I'm very interest in photography. I think it's about capturing a moment in time, like how dance is being in the moment." If not here, then where: "I've imagined myself living in New York and being a dancer there, but you know, it's really more about being the best you can be in the city you live in. I'd be anywhere that I was drawn to."
What's next: Jacquelyne is in rehearsals with Hope Stone Dance Company for its February show, which will be a children's program entitled: say please and thank you. (Think: The Electric Company.) She's also interested in exploring the wellspring of the local performing arts community, particularly the avant-garde music scene. She recently performed an improvised solo in collaboration with a drummer at an unconventional dance space. "I've been more and more interested in creating dance for those who are not necessarily drawn to dance." After the success of What Lies Beneath, she's finding more and more encouragement to choreograph. "My grandpa really wants me to choreograph," she says in discussing his response to her first evening-length work. "He was elated; he just thought it was great." And so did we.
More Creatives for 2014 (In order of most recently published; click here for the full page).
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