Madison Magazine spotlights two from School of Education in ‘a day in the life’ feature

A recent Madison Magazine feature, “A day in the life of five Madison creatives,” spotlighted two individuals with ties to the UW–Madison School of Education.

Juarez (Photo: Darren Lee)

AJ Juarez, who teaches hip hop in the School of Education’s Dance Department and is also the owner of Barrio Dance in Madison, talked about his morning and evening routines, his choreographic process, and how he became a dancer. He also shared his advice for people who want to be creative, and discussed why creativity matters.

“I feel like everybody, all humans, are creative,” Juarez says.

He adds: “Creation has no limit. But sometimes we, as humans, (construct) the limits — and that’s not good. (Thinking), ‘Oh, nobody would do that’ or ‘I should do something like somebody else’ — no, you should do what you imagined, what you’re feeling. Sometimes that’s the best work, because it’s authentic.”

Santino (Photos: Darren Lee)

The magazine also spoke with alumnus Will Kiley Santino, an illustrator, writer, comic, and New Yorker cartoonist who earned his MFA from the School of Education’s Art Department in 2018.

Santino reflects on how he chose his life path, which includes diverse creative pursuits. He lost his older brother to cancer in 2017, and graduated with his MFA only a few months later. “I absolutely have doubts sometimes …  but I thoroughly enjoy the journey,” he says. “Especially having seen firsthand how fickle fate can be with my brother, who, in his 20s, was a very healthy person who was diagnosed with cancer  —  you might as well do what you love, follow your dreams. Because it might not be available in three years.”

Check out the full Madison Magazine feature to learn more about Juarez, Santino, and other Madison creative professionals.

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