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April 1, 2023 Collective Thread Dance Festival Program

Collective Thread provides a voice and a platform for artistic self-impression to those women identifying artists of underrepresented ethnic groups within the medium of dance. ***PLEASE NOTE: MADC uses the term “women” to encompass all those that self-identify as women including cisgender and transgender femmes. We honor and respect all identities.*** The goal of Collective Thread is to instill artists with the necessary tools to take on leadership roles in an effort to increase diversity, inclusion, and gender equality in the dance field. 


MADC’s Collective Thread Dance Festival is made possible in part with funding from the West Harlem Development Corporation (WHDC) Community Board Grant and the Lower Manhattan Cultural Center (LMCC) Creative Engagement Grant.

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You don't have to love me, just accept me 

Choreographed & Performed by: Aika Takeshima & Sara Pizzi/sarAika movement collective

Music: Manoid - For Roses


IG: @saraikamovementcollective


sarAika movement collective is a conceptual/contemporary/interdisciplinary/collaborative dance collective. Founded in 2021 by Aika Takeshima & Sara Pizzi, they found a common artistic language from their perspective unifying their skills and knowledge sharing the goal to create art about and for humans. Their art is a form of activism documenting key issues and personal insights, to highlight minority groups and underrepresented communities, and create a safe space for reflection. They advocate for a diverse, equitable, and inclusive environment with the mission to help people find possibility and freedom within themselves pursuing this value of authenticity to bond their community. sarAika presented their works for: Green Space, 7MPR, Dixon Place, The Craft, IKADA, JCAL, BAAD!, MR, Dance Parade, CreateART, Creative Performances, The Tank, The Brick, HERE, Queensboro Dance Festival, Turnout NYC, The Museum of the City of New York, Gibney, TADA! Theater, LATEA Theatre and more. 

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Choreographed & Performed by: Jalyn Gill & Tashae Udo

Music: Mikael Karlsson - Submit


IG: @choreobyjalyn  @tashaeudo  

Tashae Udo (she/her) is a current company member of Antonio Brown Dance in NYC. She is currently touring with Grammy-Award winning artist Esperanza Spalding and has recently made a guest appearance on Apple TV. Tashae is a graduate of Montclair State University where she received her BFA in Dance. She began her dance training as a freshman at BIT Medford Campus and continued to train throughout her college career. Tasha has been able to teach step dance internationally in Ghana, Iceland, Switzerland and Italy. She has appeared as a guest artist for Dancespora Dance and Zion Dance Project. Tasha has performed works by Ohad Naharin, Clifton Brown, Sidra Bell, Bill T. Jones, Abby Zbikowski and Fredrick Earl Mosley. As a freelance artist she has had the pleasure to collaborate with multiple NYC based artists, choreographers and teachers.

Jalyn Gill, a Native New Yorker, is a teacher, choreographer and performer. She began her training at Edge School of the Arts and continued her training at Dance Theatre of Harlem and Mark Morris Dance Group. Gill also participated in Summer Intensives at Earl Mosley’s Institute of the Arts and The Ailey School. Jalyn graduated Magna Cum Laude from Montclair State University in 2020, holding a B.F.A in Dance. Gill has taught and choreographed at her high school alma mater, Brooklyn High School of the Arts, where she taught Ballet, Modern and Contemporary. She has performed with up-and-coming companies such as Maliek Dance Theater and Five Two Dance Company. As an artist, Jalyn is passionate about creating a safe space for dancers as well as projecting her inner voice through her work. 

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Echoes Unheard: Through the Eyes of the Nayika

Choreographed by: Divya Shanker & Shreya Ramanathan

Performed by: Shreya Ramanathan

Music: Panagendra Sayana, Sri Swati Tirunal 


IG: @_shreyaramanathan    

Shreya Ramanathan has been studying Bharatanatyam under the tutelage of Smt. Divya Shanker for the last 13 years in Austin, TX, and completed her Arangetram in August 2019. As a dancer, she concentrates on conveying complex stories through subtle facial expressions and graceful, yet energetic footwork and is particularly passionate about using dance as a medium to raise awareness for compelling issues. Over the years, Shreya has also trained under world-renowned dancers such as Smt. Rama Vaidyanathan, Srijith Nambiar, and Guru G. Srikanth. Today, her work has been recognized by many national and international organizations. Most recently, she was selected as a 2022 Aseemkala Choreography Fellow, 2021 National YoungArts Foundation winner in dance, and  2020 IndianRaga Dance Fellow. 

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I'm Not The Only Dreamer

Choreographed by: Audrey Hubbard Madison/MoJazz Dance

Performed by: Cynthia Cummings; Sheila Kennedy; Bernadette Lewis; Angela Lomax; Jackie Davis-Manigaulte; Karen McClain Marvin; Beverly Moore; Marie Rosenberg; Frances Vidal; Audrey Hubbard Madison

Music: Imagine by Herbie Hancock, Seal, Jeff Beck, Oumou Sangare`, Pink, Konono No.1, & India Arie


IG: @mojazzdance  

Facebook: MoJazz Dance


MoJazz Dance is a Brooklyn, NY based company, comprised of women of a certain age, currently 50 - 75 years young. The Ladies of this ensemble are dynamic, wonderfully fun-loving comrades and sisters who inspire and uplift audiences and each other, as we celebrate the joy of dance with heart and spirituality. MoJazz Dance presents choreographed works which reflect themes that are relevant to our experiences as women of color. We perform for the empowerment of all. Audrey Hubbard Madison performed at this theater as an original member of the Charles Moore Dance Theater. Thrilled for MoJazz to perform here!


Choreographed by: Andrea Vazquez-Aguirre, Elley White and Olivia Bullock/Another River Interdisciplinary

Performed by: Elley White and Olivia Bullock 

Music: La Malquerida by Natalia Lafourcade 


IG: @anotheriver_interdisciplinary @travelingkinesphere

Another River's work aims to build bridges among disciplines and, above all, to communicate to a wide audience without compromising artistic honesty. Under the artistic direction of James J. Kaufmann and Andrea Vazquez, the ensemble is comprised of core members, with guest collaborators added when our vision requires them. The core ensemble is a diverse group of artists committed to take their practice to great depth, sharing it with others through creation, performance, and teaching.

(not a performance) Movement Diary

Choreographed & Performed by: Allyson Ross/SouthernBelleStories

Music: Brander Younger and Dezron Douglas


IG: @southernbellestories   


Allyson Ross is an artist, educator and creative based in New York City. She is a graduate of Harvard University and The College of William and Mary and received professional training in dance at the Dance Theatre of Harlem and the LINES Ballet School. She has centered her creative platform on storytelling through dance performance and choreography, film and writing. As an educator, she has worked in many settings across the US teaching students K-12 with a focus on Dance, American Studies, Literacy and General Education(K-5). As a dancer, she has performed with General Mischief Dance Theater, Leah Glenn Dance Theater, Angel Kaba, Bobby Morgan, Tamika Daniels, Stacie Cannon, The Francesca Harper Project and has presented her own choreography and film through MODArts Dance Collective.

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About You

Choreographed & Performed by: Yu fujiwara & Tsubasa Nishioka

Music: Suite No.1 Sol Mayor by J. S.Bach


IG: @yu_moderndy12  @tsubasa_nishioka


Yu Fujiwara Originally from Kanagawa, Japan. She trained as a dancer in Japan Women’s College of Physical Education and Ailey School. Her previous experience includes performing for Drye/Marinaro Dance Company, Yu. S. Artistry, Balasole Dance Company, Brooklyn Royals Dance team, Belly Trans Entertainment, and Fish Leong’s 2016 U.S. tour. In addition to performing, her original choreography has been performed at KoDaFe, Queens Dance Festival, MODArts Dance Company’s Collective Thread, Camden's Festival of Dance, and Fertile Ground. Outside of performance work, she also enjoys teaching dance and sports at Japanese Children's Society.


Tsubasa Nishioka was born in Japan, studied ballet modern and contemporary.

In 2017 he was accepted to The Ailey School and got a scholarship in 2018. He had also

worked with Fumihito Shimizu, NBA Dance Company, Omar Roman de Jesus, Darshan

Bhuller Jessica Chen and Marcus Jarrell Wills.

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Sweet Seventies’ Suite, Sections 2-3

Choreographed by: Leah Tubbs/MODArts Dance Collective (MADC)

Performed by: Sharayah Spruill, Courtney Stewart, Leah Tubbs, & Yasmin Venable

Music: Roberta Flack, Donny Hathaway, & Aretha Franklin


IG: @modarts_dance    

Facebook: MODArts Dance Collective


Birmingham, AL native & Harlem resident Leah Tubbs studied dance at Alabama School of Fine Arts (ASFA) and the University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa. She has had the great opportunity to work as a professional artist with numerous dance companies, as well as currently holding the roles of teaching artist and arts educator. Leah and her husband, Shaun, established MODArts Dance Collective, Inc. (MADC) in 2011 to hold space for Black, Indigenous, & People of Color (BIPOC) artists and communities through its choreographic work, festivals, concerts, workshops, and residencies. 

Introduction & Recognition of the CREATE | SHARE | INSPIRE Legacy Award

This year's recipient, Mary Barnett, is a dancer, choreographer, artistic director, rehearsal director and arts educator. Her long history in the dance field includes professional work with the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, Martha Graham Dance Company, and Lar Lubovitch Dance Company, as well as 12 years of teaching at Talent Unlimited High School in Manhattan.

Gratitude and Thanks

MADC would like to thank its 2023 donors: Dr. & Mrs. Amamoo, Sharon Banks, William-Michael Cooper, Lauren DeGeorge, Sherema Fleming, Malaika Holder, Rev. & Mrs. Lee, Karen & Brian Lowy, Tanya Patton, Adriana Ray, Nathaniel Rutledge, Brittany Wilson, & Harriette Smiley. We are grateful to have received funding this year from IABD COHI | MOVE Collective Cohort (2021-24), West Harlem Development Corporation (WHDC), Lower Manhattan Cultural Center (LMCC) Creative Engagement Grant, & 2022/23 The Performance Project @ University Settlement Artist-in-Residence. We are thankful to be receiving subsidized studio rates as a company-in-residence at Hi-ARTS.


The goal for our 2023 fundraising campaign is to raise 20K through individual donations that will go towards our operating costs which includes staffing (Leadership Team) and consultant costs (Marketing, Grant Writer, and Accounting/Bookkeeping) to continue to expand and amplify the reach of MADC. MODArts Dance Collective is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization and all donations are tax deductible; EIN: 87-2210130. Please consider contributing to MADC here.

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