February 15, 1952 Bill T. Jones, dancer, choreographer and artistic director, was born in Bunnell, Florida. Jones performed and choreographed worldwide before forming the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company in 1982.
December 21, 1945 George Faison, dancer and choreographer, was born in Washington, D.C. Faison entered Howard University in 1964 to study dentistry, but dropped out in 1966 to pursue a career in dance. He moved to New York City and joined the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater in 1967 and remained there through 1969. In […]
February 14, 1946 Gregory Oliver Hines, dancer, choreographer and actor, was born in New York City. Hines started dancing at an early age and together with his brother and father eventually became known as Hines, Hines and Dad.
January 16, 1950 Deborrah Kaye Allen, actress, choreographer, director, and producer, was born in Houston, Texas. Allen earned her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in classical Greek literature, speech, and theater in 1971 from Howard University and made her Broadway debut in the chorus of “Purlie” in 1972. In 1980, her appearance in the Broadway […]
May 21, 2006 Katherine Mary Dunham, dancer, choreographer, author, educator, activist, and “Matriarch and Queen Mother of Black Dance,” died. Dunham was born June 22, 1909 in Glen Ellyn, Illinois. She became fascinated with dance at a young age and while in high school started a dance school for young black children. Dunham studied dance […]
May 10, 1943 Judith Anna Jamison, dancer and choreographer, was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Jamison began studying dance at the age of 10 and made her New York City debut in 1964 in the ballet “The Four Marys” at the American Ballet Theater. In 1965, she joined the Alvin Ailey Company and soon became a […]
October 29, 1994 Pearl Primus, dancer, choreographer, and anthropologist, died. Primus was born November 29, 1919 in Port of Spain, Trinidad and Tobago. Early in her career, Primus saw the need to promote African dance as an art form worthy of study and performance. In 1943, she presented her first composition, “African Ceremonial.”
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