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Jawole Willa Jo Zollar

Founding Artistic Director

Urban Bush Women

When I began Urban Bush Women in 1984, I envisioned a company founded on the energy, vitality and boldness of the African American community that I grew up in. I wanted a company that brought forth the vulnerability, sassiness and bodaciousness of the women I experienced growing up in Kansas City. My goal was to use those experiences as a vehicle for my choreographic voice.

That was now more than 30 years ago. UBW has grown to be that and more. We have inspired many and left an indelible mark on the dance field. We have changed perceptions about body types and approaches to performance in both form and content. Driven by our passion for dance, we have shown how choreographers can address socio-political issues in their work and involve whole communities in art-making. 

Almost always, we have needed something we didn't have, and our supporters have stepped forward to provide it. We are tremendously grateful for your support. The company I envisioned in the '80s can only exist as a community of engaged people committed to the connections we can forge through creating dance and creating community.

I don't know, but I been told, if you keep on dancin' you never grow old.


Photo credit: Rick McCullough

Urban Bush Women
Create Dance. Create Community.

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138 South Oxford Street, 4B - Brooklyn, NY 11217
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