The Glorya Kaufman School of Dance at the University of Southern California has announced the hiring of three new faculty members. Two of the three new faculty members are African Americans.
Saleemah E. Knight will be a lecturer at the dance school. She is a choreographer and performer who has worked on music videos for some of the nation’s top recording artists. She has also choreographed concert performances and fashion shows. Knight holds a bachelor of fine arts degree in dance from the University of Arizona and a master of fine arts degree in dance from the University of California, Irvine.
Jodie Gates, vice dean and director of the USC Glorya Kaufman School of Dance, stated that Knight “inspires and demands a very strong work ethic out of her students, and watching her work with young dancers is magic.”
Also hired as a lecturer at the dance school is d. Sabela grimes, a choreographer and educator. He has been a performer in the Rennie Harris Puremovement Company in Philadelphia. The Los Angeles Times called him “the Los Angeles dance world’s best-kept secret.” After studying African American literature, Sabela grimes earned a master of fine arts degree in dance and choreography from the University of California, Los Angeles.
“Since hip-hop is a key foundational aspect of our program, the hiring of an expert who can inform students on the history and style of hip-hop is crucial,” Gates said.