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Meet the Fellows: Choreographer Rachel Linsky

By Jewish Arts Collaborative

Published Jan 27, 2023

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Meet Dancer Rachel Linsky

(19 min) Recorded in December, 2022.

 

Rachel Linsky is a Boston-based contemporary dance artist. She holds a B.F.A. in Dance Performance and Choreography and a B.A. in Arts Administration from Elon University where she graduated summa cum laude. Rachel directs and choreographs ZACHOR, an ongoing project series that seeks to preserve the words of WWII Holocaust survivors through dance. Rachel’s choreography has been presented in national and international dance festivals such as Earl Mosely’s Diversity of Dance “Dance is Activism Film Festival,” Boston Contemporary Dance Festival, Prague International Film Festival, and many more. Her work has been awarded funding by the New England Foundation for the Arts, The City of Boston, The Russell J. Efros Foundation, Combined Jewish Philanthropies, and The Beker Foundation. Rachel has been an artist in residence at the Boston Center for the Arts through their new Dance Maker’s Laboratory Program, and at Chelsea Theatre Works. Rachel was recently commissioned by the Museum of Fine Arts Boston and the JArts to choreograph a new work for their 2021 Hanukkah celebration. Rachel is currently a dancer with KAIROS Dance Theater and The Click Boston. She is on the teaching faculty at Koltun Ballet Boston, Broadway Bound Dance Center, and Urbanity Dance.

 

Combined Jewish Philanthropies and the Jewish Arts Collaborative are proud to present the Community Creative Fellowship. This fellowship is designed to support two Boston-area creatives who are looking to explore Jewish identity through arts and/or culture. Combining both personal development and community engagement, the selected creatives will be expected to create new capstone work that is inspired by the experience of the fellowship.

Rachel Linsky on JLive

(22 min) Before she was chosen to be a 2023 Community Creative Fellow, Rachel Linsky joined JArts Executive Director Laura Mandel to discuss her work in April, 2022.

 

About JLive: 

JLive, an ongoing project from the Jewish Arts Collaborative, is a series of virtual cultural experiences that bring us together to explore and celebrate the diverse world of Jewish art, culture, and creative expression. The professionals featured in the series span a wide range of creative mediums, from animation to klezmer to papercutting, all with connections to the Greater Boston Area. 

"Selection"

(6 min)

Artist Statement:

This film is part of my ongoing project series, ZACHOR, which seeks to preserve and eternalize the words of WWII Holocaust Survivors through dance. The choreography in this piece was built using memories of Holocaust Survivors Elie Wiesel and Agi Geva on the selection process in Nazi concentration camps, a process determining who would be used for slave labor and who would be sent to gas chambers, separating and destroying millions of lives and families.

For “Selection,” I incorporated the powerful words of Bernard Marks into the soundscore, as he confronts the ICE director in Sacramento, California in 2017. Survivors such as Marks, who chose and choose to share their stories do not do so because it is an easy experience for them to relive. They do so out of human responsibility, with the goal that history should never repeat itself; it is the responsibility of future generations to remember and acknowledge when history does.

This project is funded in part by Combined Jewish Philanthropies and by New England Foundation for the Arts’ New England Dance Fund, with generous support from the Aliad Fund at the Boston Foundation. Thank you to these incredible organizations and the many generous individuals who supported the creation of this work.

 

Director & Choreographer: Rachel Linsky

Videographer: Olivia Moon Photography/halfasianlens

Dancers: Gabriela Amy-Moreno, Imani Deal, Haylee Denham, Olivia Link, Erin McNulty, Mindy Phung, Erin Washington

Soundscore: To The Hills (Variation 1) – Alexander Balanescu, Speech of Bernard Marks – ICE Forum in 2017 in Sacramento, California.

 

Filmed at The New England Holocaust Memorial.

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JArts’ mission is to curate, celebrate, and build community around the diverse world of Jewish arts, culture, and creative expression. Our vision is of a more connected, engaged, and tolerant world inspired by Jewish arts and culture. Learn more at jartsboston.org.

Reflections

Art happens here

The Community Creative Fellows are Jewish artists who live and work in the Greater Boston area, serving the communities that they are a part of. What are the benefits (for community members and artists) of having hyperlocal arts programming?

Holocaust Education

What do you think of Rachel Linsky's approach to Holocaust Education through dance? In what ways can art and performance educate us in ways different than traditional classroom learning?

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