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Saleana Pettaway

Visiting Lecturer of Dance

Saleana Pettaway is an artist, educator, choreographer, master teacher, principle dancer, and currently co-directing the dance program at Eastern University.  She is recognized in the region for her hard-hitting dance training practices and her active pursuit to empower dancers to embody the historical, social-cultural and aesthetic traditions of African-based dance forms.  As an artist, she draws from her post-graduate cultural studies in African Christianity and produces cutting-edge multi-media dance works aimed to inspire, inform and liberate.

Her master classes and lectures are noted at national conferences such as ACDFA (American College Dance Festival Association) and the National High School Festival, held at the University of the Arts.  As an educator, she was featured in the 2010 June edition of Dance Teacher Magazine for her insights into teaching technique and brings to the department more than 20 years of performance and pedagogy.

She holds a BFA and Masters in education from Temple University and was awarded national merit from the National Dance Association for excellence in 1997.  Native to Philadelphia, her roots in dance and theater began at the New Freedom Theater and Philadanco where she trained with dance legends Pearl Primus, Jawole Willa Jo Zollar of Urban Bush Women and Deborah Chase of Alvin Ailey to name a few.  She is recognized as a Master Teacher of the "Umfundalai dance technique", one of only three in the world and was certified in 1995 by the Institute of African Dance Research and Performance.  Mentored by international artist and scholar, Dr. Kariamu Welsh, she serves as principle dancer and rehearsal master of "Kariamu & Company: Traditions."  Humbled by her achievements, she lives in Philadelphia and enjoys a full life with her two children.

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