Three stories. One University.
Professor of Dance Endalyn Taylor has toured the world with the Dance Theatre of Harlem and performed on Broadway in the original cast of “The Lion King.” Raised on the south side of Chicago, Taylor left home at age 16 to become a principal dancer at the Dance Theatre of Harlem. Recently, Taylor traveled back to New York with a group of her Illinois students to perform a piece she choreographed at the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater. She encourages her students by telling them “never underestimate the power of you … never forget that what you have that no one else has is your unique perspective.”
When the founding members of Definition Theatre Company graduated from Illinois in 2012, they wanted to change the world. Frustrated by a lack of diversity in the world of theater, they decided to form their own company. So far, the members have produced over a dozen plays in Chicago with the goal of diversity both on stage and behind the stage. The company has earned critical acclaim, and in 2017, award-winning Goodman Theatre Director Chuck Smith worked with Definition to stage Brandon Jacobs-Jenkins groundbreaking work “An Octoroon.” The play is a racial farce that challenges stereotypes from plantation America to the present day.
Phil Collins, Steely Dan and Tito Puente are just a few of