FIERCE! Pearl Primus: Pioneer of Moden African American Dance
Internationally famous choreographer, dancer, anthropologist, Dr. Pearl Eileen Primus (1919-1994) was hailed by critics as "...one of the United States' most spectacular dancers." Her interpretation of Black Heritage through the medium of dance was regarded as being without peer this of the Atlantic.
Pearl Primus conducted extensive research in Africa, the Caribbean Islands and the Southlands of the United States. She lived and worked with the people of these regions and shared their daily lives. The Oni (King) of Ife, H.E. Sir Adesoji Aderemi II, who ruled as Spiritual Head of the Yoruba People of Modern Nigeria (1930-1980), officially adopted her as his daughter and renamed her Omowale - translated as, "child returned home.
An honored member of the Black Academy of Arts and Letters, Pearl Primus' extensive studies into Afro-American and Afro-Caribbean cultures found expression in her art form, in her dedication to education, and in the promotion of greater understanding between all peoples.
She was the recipient of numerous honors and awards among which are: The cherished Liberian Government Decoration, "Star of Africa"; The Scroll of Honor from the National Council of Negro Women; Membership in Phi Beta Kappa; The National Culture Award from the New York State Federation of Foreign Language Teachers Commendation from the White House Conference on Children and Youth.