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Transforming culture through innovation in global arts, critical studies, digital media, dance and performance.
Through performance, media, and critical studies, UCLA’s Department of World Arts and Cultures/Dance (WACD) faculty and students forge new and diverse understandings about the social and political impacts of culture and performance. Our department produces world-class scholars of the body-based arts; prepares accomplished choreographers for the next stages of their careers; launches social activists, documentarians, curators, and cultural scholars; trains the next generation of choreographic innovators.
Members of our exceptional community include:
Dance Professor Kyle Abraham’s latest work, An Untitled Love, takes inspiration from often overlooked love and unity within the black community. A MacArthur Fellow, Abraham’s choreography—performed around the world to critical and popular acclaim—speaks deeply of the complexities of identity, personal history, and urban life, using a virtuosic mix of modern, urban, hip hop, and classical dance forms.
Dr. Shamell Bell (Ph.D 2019) is a scholar, dancer, and original member of the #blacklivesmatter movement. Her research situates street dance as a tool for grassroots political action. Shamell’s dissertation, Living is Resisting: Rize to Street Dance, Activism as a Corporeal Pedagogy, analyzes West Coast street dances such as krumping and jerkin’, illuminating ways in which young African Americans mobilize these and other dance practices to push back against forces afflicting their communities.
Isabella D’Agnenica (B.A. in World Arts and Cultures, 2020) creates documentaries, visual art, and scholarship to consider how our everyday social interactions are impacted by documentation, media representation, and mythologies of the places in which we find ourselves. From fabricating a deck of baseball cards made from detritus around Dodger Stadium, to writing about L.A.’s freeway system as a source of both mobility and oppression, Isabella uses art-making as a research modality, and scholarly research as a basis for her art.
Your support will enhance our students’ and faculty’s immersion in cutting-edge research and art-making, whether it’s on campus, on stage, or embedded in communities from Malawi to Brussels to Boyle Heights. You will help to further diversify our student body, and to expand students’ opportunities to learn from some of the world’s most groundbreaking artists and scholars.
Student and professor examine textile pattern.
Students hone choreography through dedicated practice.
World Arts and Cultures student explains cross-cultural textile creation.
Dance students engage in postmodern dance performance.
Your Gift May Be Tax Deductible
Your Gift is Tax Deductible