We at CircusTalk are grateful for each and every one of our members. From discipline to background, the CircusTalk community is home to a wide array of circus professionals and we want to celebrate you! We introduce to you the CircusTalk PRO Member Showcase, a series dedicated to shining the spotlight on our unique PRO members. Without further ado, we present…
Sarah Louis-Jean – Contemporary Boleadoras Dancer
Accomplished dancer and circus artist, Sarah Louis-Jean specializes in Contemporary Boleadoras. She holds a Guiness World Record in the dance form and has over 20 years of experience performing in over 30 countries. Louis-Jean is a prolific dancer, with experience in many different styles. After training at the National Ballet School of Canada, she graduated from the National Circus School of Montreal. She is still currently based in Montreal, while also splitting her time in Berlin.
She performs a specialized form of boleadoras that includes circus manipulation, acrobatics, cabaret elements, and modernized clothes and music. Her style is non traditional, and she adds her own personal elements to the dance. Sarah Louis-Jean has performed with companies like Cirque du Soleil, Cirque Eloize, and 7 doigts de la main as both an artistic director and an acrobat. Louis-Jean is also a singer and actress.
We asked Sarah Louis-Jean what her favorite part of boleadoras is, and how she expresses herself on stage. She responded:
“My favourite part is that it is very percutant. It allows me to be very powerful and express this by twirling my ropes in ways that are quick and bring dangerousness. I like the vibe that it gives, I feel I have to give my 300% and it is liberating as I give everything I have in my soul on stage. It’s everything I have at every single show. I also love that it’s a mix of a lot of aspects I love about performing arts: manipulation, percussion, dance and circus all in one act. Percussions is a total artform that is not easy to learn, a sense of rhythm is not given to everyone and mixing that with the way I move along with manipulation is a nice challenge and takes a long time to do. Even it’s an not very known artform, I am very happy to have discovered it, and it allows me to communication with the audience, as I always make sure they react when I am on stage, I go search something inside of them so that they have to be scared, or they have to express something even as watching me perform. And that is a way for me to let them know they have inner power too.”
When it comes to advice, Sarah Louis-Jean has some words of wisdom for up-and-coming performers:
“I would say that whatever happens, do what you love doing everyday. Train a lot. Be yourself, You are unique and amazing just by being you. Do what you love your way, even if others don’t understand. If you feel to move in a certain way with your act, there are no rules that say you are not allowed to. Some people like it, others won’t, you don’t have any control on what they think, but in the end, you expressed what you needed to, deep inside and you have the right to. Freedom comes first in your mind, work on your mindset as much as your performing skills. There will be ups and downs, mistakes, there will also be people that you loved disappear, or being silent or belittling you, and others that encourage you, and with which you grow together. It does not matter, all that matters is that you are the only one who knows what your path should be. Take advice, and let go of what needs to. No one else has the answers than yourself. I will always remember someone from the audience coming to me after a show in Australia saying: ‘Never give up’, please never do. Keep focus.”
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