Shakia Johnson is a choreographer, performer, and dance educator whose work is rooted in the African Diaspora, focusing on Hip-Hop, modern, and traditional African dance forms. She is an MFA Choreography candidate at Wilson College, she holds an associate’s degree in dance and psychology from Dean College, a bachelor’s in liberal arts from Westfield State University, and, she received the National Dance Institute’s teaching artist certificate in 2009. Her other dance training includes the Bates Dance Festival, Jacob’s Pillow, and Pioneer Valley’s Performing Arts Charter School.
Johnson has choreographed and directed more than 50 Hip-Hop, modern, African and lyrical works that have been performed at Trenton Educational Dance Institute, Rider University, the Princeton School of Ballet, and the Bates Dance Festival. She has performed for numerous Hip-Hop events and has opened for concerts by Fat Joe, Jadakiss, 112, Charlie Baltimore, and Kima from “Total” and Omarion. In 2005, she choreographed a Hip-Hop number for the Celtics/NBA half-time show. Johnson has toured nationally and internationally, dancing with Face Da Phlave Entertainment and Illstyle and Peace Productions. And recently, she made a guest appearance with Rennie Harris PureMovement.
As a dance educator, Johnson spent four years teaching at the Bates Dance Festival and this past year teaching community classes at Jacob’s Pillow. Her recent work titled “Our House” was selected to be performed for Community Day at Jacob’s Pillow this past summer. Prior to joining the Five Colleges program as a full-time faculty member, she served as an adjunct at Mount Holyoke, Smith, and Connecticut colleges. Johnson was also the 2019 Arthur Levitt Jr. ’52 Artist-in-Residence at Williams College.