Shedia Nelson Back to all Bios previous | next

Shedia Asiya Nelson has performed West African and Congolese dances and songs while on tour with the Up with People international program (UWP) during her senior year at Hawai`i Pacific University. The UWP program is an experiential educational program where the world is the classroom and the stage is a forum to deliver the message of peace around the world with an original Broadway style musical production A Common Beat. Ms. Nelson traveled with a cast of 130 people from 23 countries, stayed with 60 host families while contributing to over a hundred hours of community service. By the end of the yearlong program, she had performed 99 shows, traveled to 73 cities and 8 countries. One of her momentous performances included a performance in four languages before the pope and two million people for World Youth Day in Rome, Italy.

In Hawai`i, she performed West African and Congolese dances and songs with First Circle Drum and Dance. She also performed Brazilian samba dances with the drum and dance ensemble Samba Axe. While attending Hawaii Pacific University, she performed West African dances for annual banquet with an student ensemble. Her experience and performance extends 10 years in West African dances and songs. She is a prolific poet who has been published nine times in noteworthy anthologies and publications. She expresses her love of dancing through her haiku poem, “To be in rhyme, to/be in time, dancin/with drums in my feet.”

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