L'ART Magazine

L'ART Magazine

Debbie Allen: Artist Of The Week

Debbie Allen: Artist Of The Week

July 24, 2017 | D&L

As National Dance Day is approaching – Saturday July 29th – we thought it was the perfect time to feature a dance legend in our weekly Artist Of The Week segment; the one and only, Ms Debbie Allen!

Allen is an inspiration to many, in particular black women and young girls who can look up to her as a role model. Someone they can personally relate to as an artist who looks like them.

She is a Principal of her own dance school – the Debbie Allen Dance Academy (DADA), a dancer, choreographer, actress, TV producer and director and she continues to produce incredible results in every project she puts her mind to.

If you ask anyone about Debbie Allen, at least 90% of the time the first thought will be her role in the 1982 musical-drama TV series, Fame! Allen played Lydia Grant, the series’ dance teacher and she was also principal choreographer of the show.

It was after her Broadway debut in the chorus of Purlie that she was introduced to a wider audience in this role that would open up many more doors in her career.

Before the TV adaptation of Fame, Allen starred in the self-titled movie and to this day, it is one of the best dance films ever.

Throughout the years she has been appointed as a member of the President’s Committee for Arts and Humanities, received a star on the Hollywood Walk Of Fame and is the three-time Emmy award winner for Choreography in the Fame series, and this is just a small scale of her achievements to date.

Today, she continues to run a successful dance academy and offer opportunities to students of colour, something that wasn’t always an easy ride for her when she was growing up. Facing rejection for not being the ‘right shape’ or ‘right colour’; she is now dedicated to making sure students do not have to face this racist and prejudice treatment when she’s around.

PREVIOUS: Naomi Scott: Artist Of The Week

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