100 Dallas Creatives: No. 11 Moody Fuqua, Music Community Organizer

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Mixmaster presents "100 Creatives," in which we feature cultural entrepreneurs of Dallas in random order.

Fresh off the 18th year anniversary party, the guys at Crown & Harp have a lot to be thankful for, particularly our next Dallas luminary, Moody Fuqua.

Since 2013, Fuqua's been doing everything there, from picking out the drapes to organizing some of the most exciting all-local music cards to ever grace the Dallas music scene. And we're not alone in calling Crown & Harp the epicenter of the Lower Greenville "comeback tour."

For Fuqua however, it's about far more than putting on a good show. His true aim is to cultivate the local music scene here in Dallas, and help turn it into something bigger and better than it's ever been.

"There's so much music out there in the city and I felt like for a long time, up until really recently, only a little of it was getting attention and it was kind of hurting the scene," Fuqua says. Since he started booking shows for Crown & Harp he has worked to get people like fellow Dallas creative Stefan Gonzalez to help him promote and book local Dallas acts.

"Local shows actually draw now," Fuqua says. "All local bills actually are money makers now, so people on the other end of it looking on the money side are into it, which is awesome. This is what we wanted to happen. I mean their reasoning might not be so awesome, but hey man, it just means that all these local artists are getting the attention that they deserve."

They sure are, thanks in part to the hard work of people like Fuqua. He had a moment to spare for us, and we jumped at the chance to pick his brain.


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100 Dallas Creatives: No. 12 Gallerists Gina & Dustin Orlando, Boundary Pushers

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Mixmaster presents "100 Creatives," in which we feature cultural entrepreneurs of Dallas in random order.
Gina and Dustin Orlando are two cool cats. A few years ago, these two gallerists opened up Circuit 12 Contemporary, which quickly became a go-to space in the Design District, and their programming roster continues to challenge the gallery norm. They've allowed artists to transform the white walls into wonderlands of conceptual art, or paint a mural inside, or even set up a small fashion boutique in the back. They've impressed us so much, we even picked them for 2014's Best Gallery in Dallas. They're keeping art lively and pushing the Dallas scene forward. And they're making it look fun.

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100 Dallas Creatives: No. 13 Will Power, Playwright and Mentor

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Mixmaster presents "100 Creatives," in which we feature cultural entrepreneurs of Dallas in random order.
Since Will Power arrived in Dallas he's been busy. With a background in performance, writing and education, he's not just creating his own work but he's investing in the work of future generations. Originally commissioned to be the Meadows Theatre Artist-in-Residence at Southern Methodist University, he also became the playwright-in-residence at the Dallas Theater Center. Which means that most of his days are filled with teaching, mentoring the young playwrights of Dallas, and writing plays and musicals of his own.

For Dallas Theater Center, he's been working on a new musical, Stagger Lee, which previews January 22 and opens January 30. It's a work that delves into the myths and legends of American folklore like Frankie and Johnny, and its namesake, Stagger Lee, whose story is of a man deep in the seedy underbelly of turn of the 20th century St. Louis. We talked to Power about this new musical, playwriting in Dallas, and where you'll catch him on a day off.

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100 Dallas Creatives: No. 14 Janeil Engelstad, an Artist with Purpose

Categories: 100 Creatives

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Mixmaster presents "100 Creatives," in which we feature cultural entrepreneurs of Dallas in random order.
Janeil Engelstad is an artist. A photographer. A curator. An educator. A producer. A former Fulbright Scholar. A tea drinker. One of the busiest people in town. And she's turned that "busyness" into an asset. Engelstad knows everyone, and knows the people you haven't met yet, and wants you to get to know them.

How? Through her organization Make Art With Purpose (MAP), which was founded in 2010 as a resource center for creative projects that are meant to shape and transform our world in positive ways. The MAP website is an open-source, interactive, virtual resource center that includes how-to plans for people to replicate similar projects in their own communities. MAP partners with artists, NGOs, scientists, and others to produce projects, exhibitions, conferences, and other public programs that are rooted in consciousness and include ideas for positive environmental and social change. While it was founded in 2010, it was not until 2013 that Engelstad organized the first MAP festival, and we were lucky enough to have it in our city. It brought awareness to public art and local artists working with a community mindset; and it also brought national and international artists to Dallas to create original pieces of public art.

It is Engelstad's hope to one day have a festival of this magnitude once every three years in a new city, but for now, we're able to call Dallas the inaugural birthplace of the MAP Festival, and Engelstad one of our own cultural ambassadors.


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100 Dallas Creatives: No. 15 Carlos Alejandro Guajardo-Molina, the Book Guy

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Scott Wayne McDaniel
Mixmaster presents "100 Creatives," in which we feature cultural entrepreneurs of Dallas in random order.
One of the most exciting additions to hit Oak Cliff in 2014 was definitely The Wild Detectives. From the outside the place looks like any other house down 8th Street, but inside you'll find three of life's most glorious gifts: books, booze and bottomless cups of coffee.

And one of the main people we have to thank for this intellectual playground is General Manger Carlos Alejandro Guajardo-Molina. Through a mutual friend, he was introduced to co-owners Paco Vique and Javier Garcia del Moral to help launch the indie bookstore in the summer of 2013.

Since then Guajardo-Molina has been manning the helm, picking out the books, looking for ways to expand The Wild Detectives scope to include local music and curating the fantastic events. Everything from book readings with authors like Scott Blackwood, to Mouth Full of Words, their new series of tasting sessions, and let's not forget eccentric musician George Quartz's Friday night DJ sessions, Fahrenheit 314.

We just had to get a hold of Guajardo-Molina and find out his secret to creating a unique and comfortable space. Luckily he had some time for us in-between filling shelves with the coolest books in town.


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100 Dallas Creatives: No. 16 Ballet Queen Katie Puder

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Mixmaster presents "100 Creatives," in which we feature cultural entrepreneurs of Dallas in random order.
A long time professional dancer with Metropolitan Classical Ballet, Katie Puder has spend much of her life in Dallas on her toes. And like a good dancer, when it was time to take a step in a new direction, she didn't hesitate. In 2012, she paired up with David Cooper, principal French horn with the Dallas Symphony Orchestra, to create Avant Chamber Ballet, a small, professional dance company committed to high quality dance and live musical accompaniment. She's earned accolades from the local dance critics, and programmed show after elegant show, and this year promises to be her biggest yet as she programs a robust third season for the company, including performances with the Soluna Festival in May. And she's made it look easy.


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100 Dallas Creatives: No. 17 Artful Advocate Vicki Meek

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Mixmaster presents "100 Creatives," in which we feature cultural entrepreneurs of Dallas in random order.
In the 1980s, Vicki Meek made her way to Dallas as an artist in residence for the City Arts Program, but she soon found that her calling lay in the administration side of the arts in the city that was slowly become her home. In 1983, she took her first job as an arts administrator at the City Arts Program to help build a more equitable funding system. By 1997, she took over the South Dallas Cultural Center. Now, she's one of the city's most recognizable arts advocate.


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100 Dallas Creatives: No. 18 Gallerist Jordan Roth, the Art Scene Cheerleader

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Scott Wayne McDaniel
Mixmaster presents "100 Creatives," in which we feature cultural entrepreneurs of Dallas in random order.
Let's just skip to the point we'd like to make about Jordan Roth, shall we? If a gallerist is his artists' pimp, he isn't your typical gallerist. Because Roth, who runs the downtown Ro2 Art with his mother, Susan Roth Romans, isn't just interested in the artists he represents, but in all Dallas-based artists, and beyond. If you needed a tour guide to the Dallas visual art scene, he'd be your man. You'd start in his space, where he'd introduce you to a special hive of local, regional and international artists, and then he'd be quick to direct you to numerous art spaces across the city, giving each neighborhood and artist their due.

It's rare to find someone in the art business so eager to promote the whole scene. And sincerely, too. If anyone wants Dallas art to be on the international map, it's Roth. This organic approach to building a gallery seems to have paid off. After five years in business, Roth and his mom seem to be successful and they're having a hell of a lot of fun.


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100 Dallas Creatives: No. 20 Playwright Jonathan Norton, Man of Many Words

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Playwright Jonathan Norton's The 67th Book of the Bible premieres this month at City Performance Hall.
Mixmaster presents "100 Creatives," in which we feature cultural entrepreneurs of Dallas in random order.

Lots of people write plays. Not many get plays produced and put on a stage for audiences to see. Dallas playwright Jonathan Norton has been getting his plays out of his head, onto the page and onto lots of stages since he was 15.

Now in his late 30s, Norton, whose day job is managing McFarlin Auditorium at SMU, is about to see two of his latest plays come to life. First up is the world premiere of The 67th Book of the Bible, based on real-life events surrounding Martin Luther King Jr.'s "Letter from a Birmingham Jail." It's getting a special production at 7 p.m. Monday, January 19, at City Performance Hall, presented by Dallas Institute of Humanities and Culture as part of the 2015 MLK Symposium. (Tickets are $10-$20 and available at the door or through the institute.) Will Power, Dallas Theater Center's playwright-in-residence, is producing the performance. Chicago's Derrick Sanders directs a cast featuring Dallas actors Dennis Raveneau, Kenneisha Thompson and Vontress Mitchell.

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100 Dallas Creatives: No. 21 Keeper of the Safe Room Lauren Gray

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Selfie/ Lauren Gray
Mixmaster presents "100 Creatives," in which we feature cultural entrepreneurs of Dallas in random order.
Some of the best art shows in Dallas happen in the smallest spaces. Take The Safe Room at the Texas Theatre, the lovely little room turned gallery tucked away at the top of the mostly hidden staircase. In early 2013 when Lauren Gray reached out the guys at the historic movie house about curating some art shows somewhere in the theater, this was the space they chose. And almost every month she presents new art shows, mostly by local emerging artists, made almost more engaging by the setting.

Before The Safe Room, Gray co-founded the former And/Or Gallery with Paul Slocum, which was one of the go-to spaces in Dallas during its three year life, from 2006-09. So, she's not new to the gallery game, but she brings a fresh energy to the space picking artist after artist from Dallas or elsewhere who seem destined to blow up.


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