Dr. C. Kemal Nance


Assistant Professor

Dr. C. Kemal NanceC. Kemal Nance, PhD (Kibon), a native of Chester, Pennsylvania, is a master teacher of the Umfundalai technique of contemporary African dance. He leads the Organization of Umfundalai Teachers, a consortium of African dance artists and scholars who develop pedagogy development experiences for budding African dance teachers, and has recently coedited Iwé Illanan: The Umfundalai Teacher's Handbook with Umfundalai progenitor and mentor Kariamu Welsh, DArts. He has also authored book chapters in the forthcoming Dance and Quality of Life and African Dance in America: Perpetual Motion and Hot Feet. Currently, Nance codirects the Berry and Nance Dance Project and can be seen performing with this dancing black male initiative in Stafford C. Berry Jr.'s evening-length dance/theatre project Who I Be at Denison University in Granville, Ohio, this upcoming February. His recent choreographic work, hmu (Hit Me Up), a dance originally set on U of I students, has been performed at the Umfundalai Performance Showcase in Bethesda, Maryland; the Africa Festival at Kent State University in Kent, Ohio; and, most recently, the Afro Dance Xplosion Performance Showcase in London, United Kingdom. Nance is a proud member of the University of Illinois Black Chorus under the direction of Dr. Ollie Watts Davis and of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc. He holds a BA in sociology/anthropology with a concentration in black studies from Swarthmore College, where he served on the dance faculty for 20 years, and holds an MEd and a PhD in dance from Temple University, where he was awarded the Katherine Dunham Award for Creative Dance Research. At the 2014 Consortium of Black Arts in Salvador, Bahian attendees nicknamed Nance after a Brazilian brand of ice cream, Kibon, to reflect the "delicious time" they had dancing in his workshop.

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