A Short Film Blending Ballet & Jookin' in a Famous Old Memphis Juke Joint

Our award-winning short film Bookin’ showcases the collaboration of two Memphis jookers and two ballet dancers fusing their distinct dance styles to an original soundtrack that mixes hip-hop beats and cello. 

Filmed in Memphis, TN at Earnestine & Hazel’s, a famous former juke joint and brothel, Bookin’ challenged the dancers to fuse ballet with jookin', a soulful Memphis street dance dubbed the 'urban ballet.’

The inspiration behind Bookin’ was our city’s own history. Decades ago, Memphis helped set the direction of American culture and inspired the world with its innovative music.

Memphis was the birthplace of rock 'n roll and soul music----the byproduct of its black and white musicians inspiring each other, adopting elements of each other's styles, and most important of all, collaborating. 

Bookin' recreates that same innovative cultural collaboration, not only through its unique hybrid musical score, which blends classical cello with hip hop beats, but primarily through its dalliance of distinct dances.

Throughout the film, the dancers learn from each other, inspire each other, and fuse ballet and jookin' to create, in their words: Bookin’.