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Statement from Artistic Director

Omar Román De Jesús (he, him)

Queer LatinX Artist

I have come to a turning point in my approach to dance. This shift reflects not only my own accumulation of movement experiences, but also the deep rooted reality that dance work is always colored by the context of the world in which that work lives. 

 

While we work to envision, create, and share, we must do so with an acute awareness of our containers. Art does not exist in a bubble. As a Queer LatinX Artist, I create in an environment that regularly pressures me to make dance that specifically focuses on community-centric social advocacy. Although there are many angles by which I find this stereotype frustrating, I also understand a deep seated desire to use art as a means to bring people together, reveal injustices, and provide for the people who have been historically disenfranchised.

 

In studying my own choreography, I have come to appreciate that the cultural component of my work that so often threatens to box me in has also taught me a tremendous amount about how I want to craft my life as a dance professional. The music, movement vocabulary, drama, fantasy, and humor that I call upon in my dances all derive from a long lineage of events and practices with traceable, participatory histories on both the personal and collective levels. These histories aren’t about boosting leadership for the purpose of optics, but rather exist as constantly compounding sets of information gained through immersion. 

 

Being an artistic director means more than simply identifying myself as a leader of creative experiences. As the head of Boca Tuya, I am proud to facilitate the exchanges, collaborations, conversations, and performances that give our dancers the tools they need to create without boundaries.

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