Lula Washington dance troupe wowing audiences
Russia Loves Lula
Playing in regional theaters outside the major cities of Moscow and St. Petersburg as part of a six-week tour, the Los Angeles-based troupe is finding an excitement about dance all over the nation. “Although we are a modern dance company, we are nevertheless seen as ‘the ballet’ and given the VIP treatment,” said Washington. “Resident artists vacate their regular dressing rooms for us. Some want autographs or pictures with us.”
Lula Washington Dance Theatre (LWDT) will join the Keshet Chayim Dance Ensemble, the Agape International Choir, Grammy winner Macy Gray, pioneer female rapper MC Lyte, Israeli song sensation Haral Skaat and R&B singer Abraham McDonald for an evening of dance and music Sunday at the John Anson Ford Amphitheater.
“For every one honoree, there are thousands of other African American women [who] also deserve to be recognized. As a people, we should acknowledge and pay homage to African American women, not just for one day or one week or one month, but every day of the year.” — Skip Cooper, president, Black Business Association
Six California women will get at least a portion of their historical and honorary due at a luncheon at the Sheraton Gateway Los Angeles on Saturday.
Marcia Owens Johnson teaches classical ballet and yoga to anyone who will let her. Until she retired from corrections recently, that meant mainly children and inmates at Lancaster State Prison.
Johnson is almost 65, and has been either dancing or teaching dance for 58 years.
“I come from a long history of dance,” said Johnson. “My forte is dance. That’s where my desire and heart have always been.”
Lula Washington was inspired to dance at an early age. With her inspiration, she ultimately made the decision to share the gift of dance to young people, particularly those in the lower-income areas of Los Angeles County. The Lula Washington Dance Theatre (LWDT) was established in 1980 in the Crenshaw district and it will be celebrating its 30-year anniversary with a series of performances throughout the city. It is an accomplishment that Mrs. Washington takes great pride in. “I would like to be remembered as someone who tried to make a difference in the community,” she says.