Today we’d like to introduce you to Madison Hicks.
Madison, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
I grew up in Dallas, TX, graduated from Booker T. Washington High School for the Performing and Visual Arts and went on to receive my BFA from The Juilliard School in May of 2018. As soon as I stepped into an art school, I knew teaching and choreographing was where my heart lied and what I wanted to do for the rest of my life. Working with young artists is a dream come true. I started Moving Forward Dallas in 2017 to give back to the amazing and thriving Dallas dance community that I grew up in and to fill my passion of working with dancers. I was engulfed in the Dallas dance scene from a very young age and love all that it has to offer. I strive to bring even more deserving opportunities to the dancers. I am now a full time professional dancer with LA Dance Project and I enjoy traveling all over the world and performing but Moving Forward will always be a main focus of mine. I enjoy taking the knowledge I am gaining in my professional career and bringing it to the dancers in Dallas. I am grateful for the support of Dallas and Juilliard for guiding my way into the professional world. I strive to help many young artists create futures that fill their passion, whatever that may be.
Has it been a smooth road?
I have had many hard injuries along the way. It is extremely hard to stay focused and positive through injuries but coming back stronger than ever makes it all worth it! I am fortunate enough to have an amazing family who has supported me through my whole journey.
For Moving Forward, it definitely has not been easy to raise awareness of who we are and why we do what we do. We are a brand new organization and we are doing our best to get funding and donations as much as possible. Our goal is to make Moving Forward workshops free of charge. We do not believe that opportunities always have to come at a cost. We can only make this dream happen with enough funding to cover all of the costs. With support from incredible supporters, we have been able to make every event extremely successful and we continue to strive for our goal! Seeing the difference we make in these artists makes all of the hard work so worth it!
We’d love to hear more about your work.
I created Moving Forward Dallas in 2017 and it became a Non-Profit Organization in 2018. Our mission is to give participants an unforgettable, invaluable, and inspirational experience through the power of dance and art. We create a safe environment where students feel inspired and encouraged to push their creativity and physicality. We strive to bring fresh current ideas and a lens into the ever-evolving dance world into the thriving Dallas community. With the help from my Associate Director, Kevin Pajarillaga, we have been able to bring in guest artists from all over the world right into Dallas Texas for an extremely affordable price. Some guest artists have been Sidra Bell, Yin Yue, and Zack Tang. Dancers should not have to spend thousands of dollars to travel all over the world for training in the summer or throughout the year. Moving Forward was created to bring these opportunities right into their backyard. I grew up in Dallas and once I continued my training at The Juilliard School, I saw this gap between young artists and the concert professional world. It is my goal to diminish that gap as much as possible and help dancers with their transitions into college and professional careers. We now have had four wonderful intensives (two summers and two winters) and will be having our fifth intensive August 5-11, 2019 at our home space, KJ Dance in Plano. We also have a Mentor program where we build relationships with dancers and stay in contact throughout the year. This opportunity is open to anyone who is interested. Moving Forward has grown a lot in two short years and I am thrilled to see the impact we have and will continue to make on these young dancers.
Is our city a good place to do what you do?
Dallas is a perfect place for Moving Forward! It has an extremely supportive dance and arts community. I think every city deserves to have the opportunities that Moving Forward provides but Dallas has been a perfect home for it. The dancers are so eager and creative. A goal for Moving Forward is to eventually travel to other cities to provide opportunities for artists from all over but we will always have a Dallas intensive because the community is so special!
I would recommend Dallas as a great hub for business if someone has a new idea and is capable of bringing new things that the community does not already offer. It is a hard city to grow a business in only because there are so many wonderful businesses, arts organizations, and dance opportunities already but if you have something special to bring then its the perfect city to do so in!
- Address: 4017 Preston Rd. Plano, TX #546
- Website: www.movingforwarddallas.com
- Phone: 214-578-2416
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: @movingforwarddallas
- Facebook: @movingforwarddallas
Photography by Sharen Bradford, Kevin Pajarillaga, Mae Haines