George Faison

As producer, writer, essayist, composer, director, choreographer, dancer and actor, George Faison’s multifaceted career is replete with awards and acclaim, and a long list of A-listers in the arts with whom he has worked.  He was a former principal dancer with the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater.   He went on to form his own dance company, The Universal Dance Experience, choreographing such as: Slaves, Tilt and Suite Otis.  In 1972, Faison made his choreographic debut on Broadway with the musical Don’t Bother Me, I Can’t Cope. In 1975, he became the first African American to win a Tony award for choreography (for The Wiz).  He has choreographed and staged concerts for leading artists (Earth, Wind and Fire; Roberta Flack; Aretha Franklin; Gladys Knight and the Pips; Stevie Wonder; Dionne Warwick and Ashford and Simpson).  He has also directed productions in major theater venues throughout the United States, and created several theatrical productions of his own.  In 2000, George and co-founder Tad Schnugg opened the Faison Firehouse Theater in Harlem hailed by the media as “Hollywood in Harlem, bringing culture and art to the community.  Since its opening Dr. Faison has launched the Firehouse Respect Project, a mentoring program which continues to reach the underserved youth in the tri state area and especially those in Harlem while also presenting professional performing arts projects at his state of the art theater.

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