Jon Boogz

Movement artist heightens awareness about social issues through creative expression

Jon BoogzRyan Alexander

There are people on this planet who aren’t aware of how innately inspirational they are. They don’t seem to realize how their words infiltrate the souls of those around them—awakening bodies, powering minds and encouraging people forward. Movement artist, creative director and choreographer Jon Boogz is one of those people.

The Las Vegas resident’s résumé alone is nothing short of remarkable. From humble beginnings working on the Carnival Cruise line to performing on the street in Venice Beach to choreographing on Cirque du Soleil’s Michael Jackson ONE show, Boogz’s journey has been extensive.

In 2016, the artist released the short film Color of Reality, which he says was inspired by his hope to increase awareness about critical issues facing society. The film, which received high praise from The New York Times and The Huffington Post, combines the passionate dancing of Boogz and fellow movement artist Lil Buck with the perspective-bending painting of artist Alexa Meade. “Art speaks to people in a way that words can’t,” Boogz says. “If I’ve got a platform to say something, I feel like it’s my job to do it.”

But the most intriguing thing about Boogz isn’t his talent, his ability to manifest his creative vision into reality or even his perseverance. Boogz’s beauty lies in his unwavering faith, his belief in his own power and how he is unapologetically himself.

“I’m comfortable in my own skin,” he says. “I’m not scared because I have faith. I believe in God. Everything happens for a reason, and I’m trying not to fear things I can’t control. I can only control what I do, and that’s trying to put out the best-quality art I can to help heighten awareness around real issues.”

In 2017, Boogz will continue using his platform to call attention to social issues. He’s attending this year’s Sundance Film Festival, where he will perform a piece dedicated to Standing Rock, a cause that’s very important to him. And while he can’t give away too many details, Boogz mentions currently working on a big project with the Discovery Channel.

Something Boogz doesn’t question is the fact that there is no end to pursuing one’s dreams. “It’s like probability,” he says. “If you put in the work, it’s guaranteed something’s going to come back. You just can’t put a time frame on it,” he says. “It’s not skill that separates people, but work ethic. … Who’s going to work harder? Who will lose sleep?”

And Boogz is definitely losing some sleep. It’s an exciting year for the movement artist, but even with increased notoriety and ample opportunities coming his way, he realizes that ultimately, everything comes back to one thing: loving what one does. “I don’t know how many lives we get,” he says. “But if this is the only one I get, I want to do what I love to do.”

A version of this story was published on UnXommonVegas.com.

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