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Artistic Director of Sankofa Dance & Drum Ensemble
Office: Hartwell Hall 147C
Phone: (585) 395-5304
Jenise Akilah Anthony, a native of Trinidad and Tobago, is a dance educator, choreographer and performing artist, well known for her African Diaspora dance work. She received most of her initial training while dancing with Trinidad companies such as Les Effort Dancers, Beverly Hinds Dance Theatre, Metamorphosis Dance Company and Caribbean School of Dancing. Jenise graduated Summa Cum Laude with a B.S. in Dance from Coppin State University (CSU) in Baltimore MD where she received the Most Outstanding Dancer award and was selected to perform at the Gala concert for the Mid-Atlantic Regional American College Dance Festival (ACDA). She has left her legacy at CSU as the founder and Assistant Director of the annual Liturgical Dance Conference hosted each year by the Dance Department. Jenise received her MFA degree in Dance at Texas Woman’s University (TWU), where she was a longstanding Graduate Assistant. She was renowned for her dynamic courses in Jazz, African and online theory courses and was recognized for her excellence in dance education with two distinguished teaching awards: The Outstanding Graduate Teaching Assistant award from TWU's Graduate Student Council and the Excellence in Teaching award from TWU's Department of Dance.
Jenise has been privileged to work for recognized dance companies like Dance Place in D.C., Creative Outlet Dance Theatre of Brooklyn, Trajectory Dance Project and the Dallas Black Dance Theater where she studied intensively with professionals like Carla Perlo, Jamal Gaines, Marcia Howard, Sylvia Souman, Kim Abel, Milton Myers, and Baba Chuck Davis. As a longstanding member of the Bandan Koro African Drum & Dance Ensemble she has received professional experience through international travel and training in both drum and dance. She has studied with esteemed native West African master instructors such as Mohammed Diaby, Youssouf Koumbassa, Mouminatou Camara, Djeneba Sako, Karamoko “Moko” Camara, Jean-Claude Lessou, and Weedie Braimah.
With her dance experiences in a myriad of genres, Jenise’s work passionately focuses on fusing all her trainings to develop and expand what she calls a "Modern Afro-Carib" vocabulary. She is also committed to conceptualizing methodologies for teaching culturally influenced dance forms. She has pursued this focus while working as faculty and guest artist at Texas Christian University, Tarrant County College and TWU. Her work has been presented at ACDA, the Dance Africa Festival and Concert, Dallas and the Jazz Festival, Denton TX. She continues to travel internationally performing and building her dance repertoire and continues her performance and educational practices working with students and dance professionals.