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Jinah  Parker

Jinah Parker

Dancer, Choreographer, Playwright & Educator

Biography

Jinah Parker is a multi-faceted creative force from Buffalo, New York. A dancer since the young age of four, her work has been hailed as “stunning,” “eye-poping,” and “inclusive” (Jazz Right Now). As a dancer, choreographer, playwright, and educator, Jinah’s work is inspired by the tenacity of Debbie Allen and the endless intellectual curiosity of Katherine Dunham. Read More >

Jinah’s current project “SHE, a Choreoplay,” is headed Off-Broadway in the Spring of 2019. SHE, a multimedia theater production, is about sexual violence against women and girls, Sandra Bland, and healing. SHE combines dance, theater, video, and music; SHE is an artistic mirror for our past and present political and social climates. Indeed, SHE is a piece of art but doubles as a powerful movement, extending beyond the stage with interactive conversations and educational tools such as an interactive website, an app, and a FREE curriculum. Its power lies in its ability to say the unsaid. It attaches to that voice in your head, your heart, and your soul by operating on what is most difficult for us to say out loud—the truth.

It wasn’t until the exploration of this show that Jinah realized that she was holding in her own truth: “During the conception of SHE I was moved to work with survivors of sexual violence. They agreed to share their stories, to let me turn them into dance narrative, and agreed to perform alongside professional dancers. It was my intention to promote the healing of these four women while spreading awareness.” While Jinah’s intention was manifested, she was gifted something even greater, the revelation of her own story. “I didn’t even realize that I had been sexually abused until working on this show. I asked myself, If I didn’t know that I was holding on to a story for all these years, how many other women were also in the dark, blaming themselves?” Jinah believes it to be no coincidence that she ended up choosing a theme that presented other women that have been oppressed. Our subconscious is able to speak volumes even when our voice does not.

“SHE” has been performed with much acclaim at New York’s HERE Arts Center, Bill T. Jones’ New York Live Arts, The Brooklyn Museum, Long Island University, The New York Society for Ethical Culture, and Iona College and have all included dynamic discussions lead by Jinah, and has been described as "passionate and necessary," by the New York Times.

As an educator, Jinah has worked internationally and become recognized for her expertise around youth choreography and intersecting dance and humanitarian themes. She has worked as a full-time dance educator in both the Buffalo and New York City Departments of Education, and at the university-level as a semester substitute instructor and guest artist. Jinah now teaches part-time at The Dalton School, the prestigious private school on New York’s Upper Eastside. Her specialties are in modern technique, dance composition, curriculum writing, and interactive conversations and workshops around art and activism.

Jinah was recently awarded a 2017-2018 CUNY Dance Initiative Residency at Brooklyn College, and has been commissioned to create a curriculum for Nadine Bommer Dance Company—one of Israel’s major artistic institutions. In addition, her previous work, “Statement Pieces,” premiered at the Obie-Award winning Dixon Place in New York.

Jinah received a Master’s Degree in Dance Education from New York University and a B.A. in Dance from the University at Buffalo, where she was inducted into Phi Beta Kappa National Honors Society. Prior to her graduate studies, Jinah was a member of Dayton Contemporary Dance Company II (DCDC2), Lehrer Dance, and participated in productions of “AIDA” and “Beauty and the Beast.” During her studies at NYU, Jinah began working with Alpha Omega Theatrical Dance Company, where she had the honor of performing numerous works by Eleo Pomare; and with Annabella Gonzalez Dance Theater, where she soon became a commissioned choreographer. Jinah is grateful for her journey and has realized that her unique experience is the foundation of her power. Read Less ^

Speaker Videos

I am SHE

Speech Topics

I am SHE

An interactive and multimedia presentation about sexual violence against women and girls, with Jinah Parker, dancer, choreographer, educator, and playwright of the critically-acclaimed theater production SHE, a Choreoplay. In this engaging give-and-take with her audience Jinah highlights her own personal experiences with sexual violence; discusses her journey in producing SHE; the #MeToo movement; the intersections of sex and race in America; and what she feels recovery and healing can be for women and girls, for men and boys, for all gender identities.

Connect with Jinah Parker