Jackleen Rios began her dance career at the age of four, learning traditional ballet technique from a well known dance studio in San Antonio called the Vladimir Marek Ballet Studio. She continued dancing throughout her adolescence growing in the art of dance learning other genres such as jazz, hip hop, and modern. She continued with her dance career by attending the University of North Texas in Denton Tx, where she graduated with a Bachelor’s of Arts in Dance Cume Laude. After receiving her BA in dance, she completed her Dance Certification for 8-12th grade to begin her journey in dance education. In 2015, Jackleen graduated from The University of Texas San Antonio with a Master of Science in Health and Kinesiology.
She also taught for the Parks and Recreation of San Antonio, displaying her choreography on the San Antonio’s famous Arneson theater and has been recognized for outstanding choreography. In 2010, she became the Dance Director for San Antonio Independent School District’s Young Women’s Leadership Academy. Jackleen started the dance program at YWLA. Some of her students started with little or no experience, and have become elite dancers, who have branched out into the dance world to be successful individuals. Her students have been in numerous opportunities throughout San Antonio, such as appearing on television (Dance SA), hip hop organizations (Hype, Unified Soul), local music videos, and dancers for local singing artists.
The program has also participated in local events including the Battle of Flowers parade in 2011, 2012, 2014 and 2016. In 2015, The Young Women’s Leadership Academy was asked to perform for the Department of Education in Fine Arts in Washington D.C. Jackleen’s choreography was recognized by the Department of Education in Fine Arts’ as one of the best programs in San Antonio. Jackleen is also a member of The Texas Dance Educators Association and The Center for Education in Developing Fine Arts since 2010.
With more than 12 years of professional experience to her credit, Ms. Rios has excelled as a director and the owner of the Jewel of Art Dance Studio since 2016.
Ms. Rios is not only a business owner but also a professional dancer, choreographer, model and actress. She has worked with many local vocal artists as a choreographer, director, dancer and model. She has worked with artists such as pop artist Simply Rayne, Sarah Centeno, R&B singer Smoove, Latin Colombian Artist J Torres, American Idol contestant Steven Curd, and local band Horror on 24. She has modeled for companies such as Melrose Family Fashion, Our Kids Magazine and featured as a Woman in Business for SA Monthly Magazine. She has also appeared on local TV stations such as FOX 29, Kens5, KABB, and WOAI. Additionally, she has been the lead actress for the short film Overlooked produced by Rudy Luna and Brent Strong.
On April 2, 2019, Jackleen Rios was inducted into Marquis Who’s Who. As in all Marquis Who’s Who biographical volumes, individuals profiled are selected on the basis of current reference value. Factors such as position, noteworthy accomplishments, visibility, and prominence in a field are all taken into account during the selection process.
Although Ms. Rios is involved with many activities her main passion is teaching. The Jewel of Art Dance Studio has always been a dream of hers since she was a child. She has finally been able to reach the start and fulfill her lifelong dream of creating an environment for students to be able to find their passion and reach their dreams. The Jewel of Art Dance Studio is the stepping stone to create refined and brilliant dancers on and off the dance floor. Her goal is to ensure each dancer embodies dedication, commitment, artistry and passion. Ms. Rios considered the students to be her jewels and just as jewels shine with brilliance so will her students.
Having taught dance for over 25 years, Priscilla specializes in classical ballet and lyrical contemporary dance. She is inspired by the talent of the dance community and her students every day. In her classroom, she brings her passion for dance and for teaching young people while sharing her knowledge and experience. She strives to encourage her students to explore the possibility of their talents and push beyond what they think is achievable within themselves as performers, athletes, and artists.
In her choreography, she invites her students to bring their thoughts and personalities to the piece to deepen the level of silent dialogue a dancer has with the audience. Through movement and emotional interpretation of the music, her choreography is rooted in pop-culture using classical and modern music. Using a current message, she’s able to produce a stimulating dance-art conversation with her audiences that transcends all ages.
Priscilla Martinez began her career as a dancer studying in San Antonio, and later in Boston & New York with some of her memorable teachers being Milton Myers (modern), Michael Vernon (ballet), Elena Kunikova (ballet), Armando Duarte (modern), Danny Sloan (modern/jazz), Sam Kurjikian (ballet), Fleming Halby (ballet), Teresa Champion (flamenco), and Susan Connally (ballet/jazz/modern).
In addition to her studies in New York, she added Theatre to her stage experience. There she performed in musicals and straight plays as well as numerous national commercials, voice-overs and print ads. She has performed extensively with various dance companies, including SA Dance Theatre, now known as SA Metropolitan Ballet.
She has also choreographed award winning concert pieces. Fragil and Signs of Life were both performed at Regional Dance America’s Southwest Festival and both received the Monticello Award for Emerging Choreography, and Out of Chaos, also performed at Festival, received the Project Tier Award. She has attended several National Craft of Choreography Conferences to further her work in choreography
Advanced Jazz, Advanced Modern, and Hip Hop Heels
Mark Anthony Mata II obtained a Bachelor of Science in University Studies with a concentration in Dance and minors in Psychology and Sports Management from Texas A&M University – College Station. He started his dancing journey his junior year of high school by joining the award winning Thomas Jefferson High School Lassos Dance Team under the direction of Nikki Howell. While on team he traveled to many events for performance opportunities including the Capital of Texas, competed in many competitions, and won first-runner up in the solo division his senior year. Mark has also had the opportunity to go to Chicago, Illinois and attend the first annual Camp Kate, where he was selected as a scholarship student from Kate Jablonski in 2011. In addition, he has had the privilege to take master classes from Marlana Doyle (Houston Met), Andy Vaca, Elizabeth Ahearn, Angelie Renay Melzer, Ana Baer, Emma Portner, Phil Wright, Rudy Abreu, Molly Long, and Emily Shock. As a student, Mark performed all four years in the Texas A&M University Dance Program Annual Concert “Perpetual Motion,” where he was chosen for a rework duet titled “Cracking the Geode,” choreographed by Carisa Armstrong and in the ensemble “Rapid Eye Movement,” choreographed by Alyson Dolan. Furthermore, Mark travelled to Pittsburgh, PA in 2015 to attend the International Association for Dance Medicine & Science for a more in depth look into new technologies being used for dance anatomy research. Mark was also an integral voice in various college dance organizations such as Fade2Black and the Texas A&M Dance Arts Society where he won “Best New Choreographer,” for his piece “Roll Up Your Sleeves.” After graduating, Mark was announced as an ambassador for Travis Wall’s “Shaping Sound,” tour and was given the opportunity to be on the production team during the duration of the tour in Texas. Most recently, Mark has had the honor to perform with the House of Kenzo, a multidisciplinary performance art form at various shows in San Antonio, Austin, and Houston. Currently, Mark is an educator and studio instructor where he advocates for injury prevention and style development in all genres of dance that he professes.
Beginner Modern/Beginner Jazz
Jackie Flores is a freshman in college on the University of Texas at San Antonio’s Pom Squad. She has been dancing for over 15 years and has trained in San Antonio, Texas her entire life. She has done competitive dance for 9 years and has attended numerous competitions across Texas, including New York City Dance Alliance, NUVO, Adrenaline, 24/Seven, Celebrity, Stage One, and more. Jackie placed in the Finalist category as a contemporary soloist at Believe Dance Competition Nationals and has been recognized in conventions for outstanding technique and passion for dance. She has trained in ballet, pointe, jazz, tap, modern, contemporary, lyrical, hip hop, musical theatre, improvisation, tumbling, and ballroom. Jackie specializes in concert modern and contemporary and has participated in the Austin Dance Festival and San Antonio Dance Festival. She has also trained under the instruction of artists from around the country including Bree Hafen, Melissa Jackson (MJ), Duncan Cooper, Keith Duncan, and more. Jackie loves sharing her art with as many people as she can and wants to influence her dancers to find their passion in dance.
Children’s Classes Assistant
Dancing has been a centerpiece in Aaliyah Dulce Martinez’s life for the past 9 years. There was a special calling the moment she slipped on her first ballet slippers at the age of 3 at the Jo Ann Neal Dance Studio where she learned ballet, tap, and tumbling recreationally. Little did she know she was going to live and breathe DANCE!
At the age of 5 Aaliyah wanted to give Baile Floklorico a shot and immediately fell in love with the culture. For the next 4 years she was under the instruction of Josie Champion from Champion Studio. During her time there she had numerous performances that include the Ford Mariachi River Parade, St. Gregory Spring Festival, St. Gregory Halloweeen Festival, and Princess Festival. At age 9 Aaliyah was ready to try new dance genres and stepped foot into The Jewel of Art Dance Studio, which continues to be home. Aaliyah was introduced into a new world that she’d never walk away from as her dazzling instructor Jackleen Rios has encouraged and motivated Aaliyah to pursue her dance passion. Aaliyah’s moral principles and dedication have been acknowledged and she currently assists the children’s classes and serves as a positive role model for them.
Aaliyah eagerly attends ballet, jazz, modern, tap, hip hop, leaps and turns. In 2019 Aaliyah was accepted into Jewel and Company where she had the honor of dancing alongside talented dancers. Also, in the summer of 2019 Aailyah was awarded the “PRECIOUS JEWEL” for her recognition in her dedication. Aaliyah Dulce has had the privilege to preform and being a part of Princess Fest, Oyster Bake, Deco Fest, Jewel Fest, Mission Fest, Beauty Week, MLK Youth Summit, Half Time Spurs Show, Inaugural MLK Youth Charity Fashion Gala, Melrose Promo Video, Monster Mini Golf promo video, and appear in DJ LIL X “X IT OUT” music video.
Aaliyah lives by this quote “Dance is the joy of movement and the heart of life”. Her energy from day one has been so bright and her body just flows to the music. She is a passionate dancer and hopes to bring people joy with her passion. Aaliyah has so much to bring to the world And this is just the tip of the iceberg.
John Sierra is an experienced and energetic teacher since 1970. He has been a gymnastic instructor and coach for the Northern Hills Gymnastics Club, YMCA, Gymex Corporation, Edgewood ISD, Harrison Unlimited Gymnastics Center, and SA Gymnastics Center. In 1985, he coach Girls Class IV gymnastics team that won first in the Texas Twisters competition and a gymnastic student who won first place in all around competition in the U.S.G.F Class IV Qualifier District Championship and third place in State Semi-Finals. He is knowledgeable in both cheer and gymnastics competitions as well as holding numerous Gymnastics clinics and workshops.
Children Classes Assistant
Denise Dominguez has been dancing since she was 3 years old. Denise trains in Ballet, Hip Hop, Modern/Contemporary/Lyrical, Jazz, and Tap. Denise has been dancing at Jewel of Art Dance Studio. She was a company member of Jewel&Co from 2017-2018. Denise has performed in Houston, Austin, Dallas, and all over San Antonio including Battle of the Flowers parades, Oysterbake, Jewel Fest, Princess Fest, SXSW and many more. She has also been featured in Columbian Artist J Torres music videos as well as a backup dancer for his live performances. Denise has also toured with a Comedian Mario Aguilar. Denise is also an assisting instructor for children classes at Jewel of Art. She is an upcoming Choreographer who has been affiliated with choreography for many school performances and Quinceñera events. She has trained under the direction the Director Jackleen Rios, owner of the Jewel of Art Dance Studio since the age of 12 years old and still currently working as an aspiring dancer.
Jay Jay Egida
Advanced Hip Hop
Jerick “Jay-Jay” Egida is an instructor originally from Los Angeles California and now resides in San Antonio. He has been dancing for more than 15 years in different styles of hip-hop: bboying, locking, waacking, popping, and house. He gained his musicality style of dancing by training in studios such as: Millennium LA, Debbie Reynolds, Movement Lifestyle and many more. He has danced for some prestigious dance companies such as: Family Bizness, The Prototypes, Academy of Swag. He has built his own dance teams back in California and in Texas: Rooks, Kingdom, Legion and Sandcastles. His choreography has been performed and won awards on big stages such as World of Dance, Hip-Hop Internationals, Vibe Jrs, The Bridge, and many other dance competitions.
Mommy and Me, Combo I &II
Briana Alderete, 23 years old, has been teaching since she was 18 and dancing since she was 5. Throughout her journey she has danced ballet, jazz, hip-hop, modern, tap, folklorico and flamenco. She was also a part of the award winning Lassos Dance Team at Thomas Jefferson High School as well as the award winning Golden Girls at Thomas Edison High School where she graduated from back in 2015. Briana started her teaching career with Elite Dance Company where she taught field and pep rally routines to many high school dance teams. She then started teaching with San Antonio Parks and Recreation where she grew up taking classes and being a part of the city’s dance troupe, Alamotion. Briana is a new mother and is loving motherhood. She just adores her little Jewels and loves being a part of the Jewel Family.
Justis Tijerina is an 18 year old college freshman, born and raised in San Antonio, Texas.
He has a passion for performance which involves acting and dancing. He loves the adrenaline rush of performing. He first discovered his passion for dance in 2016 when he was given one of the lead roles for a Musical Theater performance, “In the Heights” as Graffiti Pete, his sophomore year of high school, and continued to take off from there.
He is a part of the Jewels and company dance team as well as a dance instructor and choreographer at the Jewel of Arts dance studio. He also teaches junior hip hop at Smash Dance Studio and is an elite dancer for RYP dance crew. He continues to take dance workshops to gain knowledge and to help excel in his dancing skills. His heartfelt gratitude to all his dance mentors who have helped him become the dancer he is today.
He believes “Dancing is an art, the floor is my canvas, and I am the brush and whatever I create comes from the heart.” I dance because there’s no greater feeling in the world than moving to music.
His inspiration is to inspire others and show them the love and passion of dance.