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Black History Month Spotlight: Katherine Dunham
Katherine Mary Dunham (22 June 1909 – 21 May 2006) was a dancer, choreographer, songwriter, author, educator and activist. She had one of the most successful dance careers in American and European theater of the 20th century and has been called the Matriarch and Queen Mother of Black Dance. Dunham was an innovator in African-American modern dance as well as a leader in the field of Dance Anthropology, or Ethno choreology. She choreographed a number of dance revues including Bal Nègre (1946), Caribbean Rhapsody (1948), and Bamboche (1962). Dunham made her Broadway debut in the musical Cabin in the Sky (1940), choreographed and danced in several Hollywood musicals including Stormy Weather (1943), and also choreographed Aida (1963) at New York's Metropolitan Opera and The Magic of Katherine Dunham (1987) for the Alvin Ailey Dance Theater.
In 1983, she was a recipient of one of the highest artistic awards in the USA, the Kennedy Center Honors.
In 2000 she was named one of the first 100 of "America's Irreplaceable Dance Treasures" by the Dance Heritage Coalition, and she has also been featured in the PBS Born to Dance series.
In 2005, she was awarded "Outstanding Leadership in Dance Research" by Congress on Research in Dance (CORD)
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**info courtesy of Wikipedia
filed under Black History Month