Founded in 1984 by Jawole Willa Jo Zollar, Urban Bush Women bring under-told stories to life by weaving contemporary dance, music, and text with the history, culture, and spiritual traditions of the African Diaspora. The company first performed at Jacob’s Pillow as part of its Splash Festival in 1988 and has returned many times since (most recently in 2019), presenting its works on all three stages, participating in residency activities throughout the area, and premiering works commissioned by the Pillow (including HairStories). Mentored early in her career by Dianne McIntyre, Zollar is a longtime professor at Florida State University and is the recipient of many awards and honors. Co-commissioned by Jacob’s Pillow, Praise House tells a multi-generational story based on the paintings and writing of Minnie Evans, a Southern visionary artist.
EXPLORE TWO MULTI-MEDIA ESSAYS ON JAWOLE WILLA JO ZOLLAR:
Career Overview by John Perpener
HairStories by Maura Keefe