Jennifer Wood is a choreographer, performer, teacher, and costume designer based in Houston Texas. She began dancing professionally in 1986 and began her choreographic career in 1993.
Jennifer is the founder and director of Suchu Dance, which has served as the vehicle for Jennifer's choreography and artistic vision. Since 1998, Jennifer choreographed over 40 original works including 24 evening length works for Suchu Dance.
Suchu Dance has performed and been presented in many venues in Houston including Diverse Works, the Wortham Theater, Miller Outdoor Theater, the Jewish Community Center, Main Street Theater Chelsea, Atomic Cafe, University of Houston Cullen Theater, the Heinen Theater, and at its home base, the Barnevelder Theater, as well as in other parts of Texas, including Sam Houston State University, University of Texas, Texas A&M. In 2008 Suchu Dance was invited to perform at the Jacob's Pillow Dance Festival Inside/Out Series, in Becket, MA and and also travelled to Atlanta, GA to to perform at Emory University in a joint concert with Staib Dance. Every year Suchu Dance produces the Big Range Dance Festival, a three week festival focusing on new works by local, national and international choreographers.
Jennifer is the co-founder of two performing spaces in Houston: The Duplex, an alternative salon-style performance venue for contemporary dance which showcased her and other choreographers' works between 1993 and 1999, and Barnevelder, a 7,000 square foot performance and rehearsal facility specifically designed for dance which opened in 2001 and continues today providing low cost theater rental for small to mid-sized arts organizations.
Jennifer is the recipient of a 2008 "Buffy" Award for Best Evening Length Choreographic Work. In 2001 Jennifer was named a U.S. semi-finalist in the 2002 Rencontres Choreographiques international choreography competition and she is the recipient of a 2002, 2006 and 2010 Individual Artist Fellowship in choreography from the Houston Arts Alliance. Jennifer was awarded performance residencies at Diverse Works in 2000 and 2002.
Jennifer has also collaborated with theater companies as a choreographer. In 2005 she was invited to collaborate with Infernal Bridegroom Productions in their new version of Medea. More recently, in 2012, Jennifer choreographed for Mildred's Umbrella Theater Company's production of Dead Man's Cell Phone.
In recent years Jennifer's interests have grown to include site specific and non-traditional performance spaces. Her most current work, Afternono, premiered in June 2012 and was conceived and choreographed for 16 dancers in an empty, re-claimed 50,000 square foot J.C Penny. This work was the inaugural presentation in this former department store which is being re-purposed as an arts facility called the West Oaks Art House.
Jennifer has been dancing, teaching and working with dancers to experience movement for over 20 years. Through her investigative process of choreography, Jennifer ask questions and leads dancers further into the process of their own movement discovery. Through this time, Jennifer has enjoyed teaching Suchu Dance company class at the Barnevelder Movement Arts Complex, and has taught master classes at the Big Range Dance Festival, Houston Dance Festival, Sam Houston State University, and and also worked with with college and high school students by setting choreography during residencies at Emory University, University of Houston, Rice University,and the High School for the Performing and Visual Arts in Houston.
Jennifer costumes all her own choreography and works as a costume designer for others as well. Recently Jennifer was honored with a retrospective of her costume designs in an exhibit and performance event at the Photobooth on Montrose, in Houston.
Jennifer graduated in 1989 with a B.A. in Russian Studies from the University of Houston.