Jamal Jackson Dance Company

Jamal Jackson was born in Brooklyn, New York and began his formal studies of movement with the Harlem based Batoto Yetu Dance Company from 1991-­1996.  During his time with the company he became a principal dancer and performed at many venues including the United Nations, BAM, The Apollo Theater, and Sesame Street.

His pursuit of dance led him to Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island, where he studied with Michelle Bach-­Coulibaly, Seydou Coulibaly, and Fred Benjamin.  Under their guidance he began to meld Traditional Malian dance  with Horton and Graham technique.  In addition to studying in the Brown dance department, Jamal became director of Fusion Dance Company and choreographed numerous pieces  for  New Works/World Traditions  African  Dance Company.  Jamal received the  Weston  Award  in  Arts for  his contribution  to  these companies.  In 1999 Jamal travelled to Mali, West Africa to expand his African Dance training under M’ba Coulibaly and Salimata Soumare from Kelete Dance Theatre, as well as Ba Issa Diallo, director of Troupe District du Bamako.

Once back in NY, Jamal choreographed for the New York Arts Festival and Inaya Day in 2002, marking the beginning of his African-­based, modern style of movement.  Jamal performed with Ballet International Africans for two seasons as a principal dancer and in 2004 he founded the Jamal Jackson Dance Company, which debuted Images of the Union at University Settlement in New York and at Westport Hall in Connecticut.  Today his work is performed by Jamal Jackson Dance Company and students nationally.

The mission of Jamal Jackson Dance Company (JJDC) is to translate the creative vision of Artistic Director Jamal Jackson into choreography and educational tools for use in performances, workshops and community outreach that will teach people about the connection between African and American cultures.