By Alfonso Arnold
Every month, Boulevard sends photographer and chief Alfonso Arnold to scan our wonderful city to find true and passionate artists to interview, snap, and feature. Fresh of the heels of her latest music and dance installation ti-tled “The Smoke Show” at XY, Alfonso chats with multi talented dancer, choreographer, and actress Jennifer Oleksiuk!
Boulevard: Welcome to the spotlight Jennifer! Can you us give a bit of background about yourself and your art?
Jen: I started out in acting after I graduated high school in which I still love and enjoy. Dance was something I didn’t start training in until I was 18 years old. My sister and I auditioned for a com-petitive hip-hop program and I ended up falling completely in love and that’s how it all started. As for choreography, I guess it’s something I’ve always done without even realizing it! Dance and acting is something I remember doing as a kid without knowing it was something I could have as my career. I’m very grateful that I eventually figured that out!
Boulevard: Your latest endeavor “The Smoke Show” draws as much appeal to women as it does to a male audience. With an all-female cast and suggestive routines, was it intentional?
Jennifer: Yes! Absolutely. The Smoke Show (along with most of my endeavors) was created because there was something I was missing as an audi-ence member and craving as a performer/choreographer. To present a version of sexy that I felt connected to. I was craving a certain humor and ownership on (and off) the stage in relation to sexuality and curiosity. I wanted to entertain the pants off the audience but also leave the audience, the women in particular, wanting to join us as opposed to feeling intimidated or unable to relate to us.
Boulevard: And finally, what’s come in the way of future projects and aspirations?J
en: Myself and pre-planning vacations! There are some weeks where I’ll be doing everything from choreographing for a tv series, acting, directing a music video to running The Smoke Show. I am so excited and curious about so many different art forms. But when I’m that busy, if I don’t make room for adventure, nature or a work-free day I can get a little resistant to say the least! I’m big on spontaneity so, over the years, I’ve definitely had to learn that reluctantly planning days off in advance is way better than not having any at all!
Boulevard: Thank you so much for Jennifer for taking some time out for an inspiring interview. We look forward to seeing more of you on stage and the big screen!
To learn more about Jennifer Oleksiuk:
Instagram: @jenoleksiuk & @the.smokeshowArtist