Nellesa Walthour trained on full fellowship at the Alvin Ailey School and danced with companies that include The Metropolitan Opera, Dallas Black Dance Theater (DBDT), Patricia Kenney Dance Collection, and Earl Mosely’s Diversity of Dance. She has worked with choreographers Ron Brown, Sean Curran, Louis Johnson, Alonzo King and Donald McKayle and performed works by Elisa Monte, David Parsons, José Limón, Donald Byrd and others. Her choreography includes works for DBDT, NYMF’s Trav’lin (associate), Boston’s Jazz Dance Recovery Project, festivals, and competitions. Favorite theater credits: Disney’s The Lion King, Ragtime (Kennedy Center), The Call (Rebecca), Once on This Island (Andrea). TV: High Fidelity, Bull, The Good Wife, The Haunting of…, Flight of the Conchords. Nellesa met Benjamin years ago when she had mostly been choreographing recitals for her students and had submitted a piece for a choreographer’s festival.
Her first piece for the Company, Aches and Pains, debuted in 2019 to music by Max Richter. A second piece Nellesa had been working on with Benjamin Briones Ballet was interrupted by the Covid-19 outbreak in the midst of rehearsals. Pushed into the virtual space to share our expressions, Nellesa has created a work inspired by the Black Lives Matter movement for the Company, believing that art is powerful as a tool to educate, liberate, illuminate, inspire and activate.
Nellesa holds a degree in Psychobiology having graduated from Harvard University. She is also a certified GYROTONIC® and mat Pilates instructor.