Date: Nov 27, 2017 | by Jacqueline Bull, San Diego Jewish Journal
Jacob Soble is a Jewish 17-year-old who let his love of dance and helping others blossom into something special. He runs a nonprofit Love2dance and teaches dance to underprivileged elementary students in San Diego.
Jacob comments on how he started getting involved. “I didn’t really say that I want to teach. I just started to choreograph once I was 15. And that just led me to teaching because I was like ‘I want to choreograph not only myself, but other dancers.’ Then I just started to apply for jobs and then built my way up from there. I teach weekly at OhLaLa Dance Academy and Metro Dance. And I also teach over at Culture Shock and do a bunch of master classes at Pacific Motion Dance Center. Basically a bunch of studios around San Diego.”
He has been dancing since he was six years old and started competing at 13. He explains that he soon realized not everyone has had the same opportunities as him.
“A lot of times at school I would talk to other kids and I would be like ‘you should come take a class with me’ and they would say ‘oh I can’t afford that.’ I had heard of people not going on vacations or stuff like that, but back then it was when I started dance that wasn’t really in my reality. That kind of impacted me from the start. I also knew there were no studios in Lakeside or in La Mesa – there is no dance over there. Over here in Del Mar and Sorrento Valley area, there are so many dance studios here… but I know that down in La Mesa and the rural areas, they don’t have any opportunities to be introduced to dance. It is like not even heard of. It’s not considered a hobby or sport. I wanted to bring it into the school.”
Jacob wanted to bring dance classes to those that couldn’t afford it or have access to dance studios, so he created his nonprofit. “It is over at Lindo Park Elementary and Lakeside. It’s my nonprofit called Love2dance, and I go there every other Friday and I teach [for] two hours. I do hip hop and contemporary modern with their fifth graders. It’s a class of 25. It is really cool. Most of them haven’t been exposed to dance at all. So seeing first time dancers, you know, it starts rough obviously, but once they start getting the moves and getting more comfortable being in the class and dancing and moving it is really awesome to see who is progressing the fastest … It is cool to see them develop throughout the weeks that I go. In the future, I hope to expand it to other schools, but right now I’m out of time [laughs]. I always tell my mom I’m living two lives. I’m teaching as if I just got out of college and got my degree and I’m also going to college and have to do all that.”
He credits his experience with dance as a big influence in his life. “There are so many values of dance because dance is a discipline – it’s self discipline. You need to be able to work on your own. [And] it’s a community. You always treat your partners with respect and your dancers with respect. It is one big community. It teaches a lot of values to help other people around you and discipline and studying. It teaches the discipline of committing to something and following through. Α
The classes will culminate in a showcase recital next summer for the parents and teachers. Videos of his choreography and from his classes can be found at sobledancemovement.com.