Celia Weiss Bambara is a dance artist and scholar as well as a dual citizen of the US and Burkina Faso. She is the artistic director of the CCBdance Project, which was co-founded with Burkina Faso born dance and theater artist, Christian Bambara in 2006. Her choreography, improvisation and/or site-dance work has been shown in the United States, and internationally in the Caribbean, West Africa, and in Europe. This work has been shown at venues including: Dancespace (NYC), Movement Research (NYC), Zacho Studios (SF), Links Hall (CHI), Drucker Center (CHI), Base Experimental (Seattle), Northern Michigan University, Institut Francais in Abidjan, Goethe Institut in Abidjan, Alliance Francaise (CHI), Jane Addams Hull House (CHI), African American Museum in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, Occidental College, University of Southern California, National Theater in Abidjan (CNAC), INSAAC (National Arts Conservatory in Abidjan), Cannes at the MJC Picaud, Laboragras in Berlin, National Television in Haiti, Trinidad at Alice Yard, in Jamaica at the Caribbean Studies Association, Donko Seko in Mali and at the Belk Theater at UNC Asheville. She is currently working on multi-media works in dance-film, site-dance, and photography. Her work has been awarded grants or residencies by the Puffin Foundation, Maryland Arts Council, Cornish College of the Arts, The Djerassi Foundation, Ecole Des Sables (Senegal), Donko Seko (Mali), Tanzart (Germany), UCIRA (University of California Institute for Research in the Arts), the State Department among others.

Celia’s movement research combines the base of Haitian dance with other African forms, modern/contemporary dance, yoga and Klein Mahler technique and Body Mind Centering. Celia has recently completed a 27-minute solo project, Who Fears Not Death, which has been shown in France (at CIE Tene’s Festival in Nice), Germany (through residency at Tanzart), San Francisco (at Zacho Studio’s through the Mbonqui Square Festival), North Carolina (at UNC Asheville), and in New York (at Dancespace). The dance theater work was premiered through Northern Michigan University's Theater Series in the Summer of 2021 in collaboration with lighting designer Dan Zini and musician Kimathi Moore. The dance theater work addresses mourning on an inter-continental scale through accumulated scores and mise-en-scene. This work is the 4th long duration solo work that she has created for the CCBdance Project. Celia has also recently completed a film made with scores for a small ensemble work, "Je Te Souhaites Du Bien et Après" which has been shown as research at Ecole des Sables in Senegal, Donko Seko in Mali, and at CIE Tene’s festival in Cannes, France. This work was screened at the Dance Studies film track and at the Body IQ Somatics Festival in Berlin along with a presentation on process, somatics, and dramaturgy. The project was awarded a Maryland State Arts Council grant for its final completion. Other dance films for the CCBdance Project have been screened and received awards at film and screen dance festivals in the US, Middle East, South Asia, the US, Africa, Canada and in Europe. Site dance has been shown in Chicago, Trinidad, Baltimore, Asheville, and Seattle. Her screen dance work and site-dance work made for the CCBdance Project have been conjoined through projections made for proscenium presentations as well as in the creation of new screen dances with site-adaptive scores. Celia's movement research combines the base of Haitian dance with other African forms, modern/contemporary dance, yoga, and Klein Mahler technique. She has begun study of BMC (Body Mind Centering) in Asheville and has continued her somatics study through conference and training. She has danced for Florencia Pierre/JAKA in Port-au-Prince, Shirley Martin/MKM Cultural Center, Elizabeth Chin/Ayizan in Los Angeles, and Rachel Thorne Germond. She has collaborated with notable artists including Abou Bassa, Kimathi Moore, Djenane St. Juste, Jean-Luc Okou, Kayla Hamilton, Jessica Ray, Loren Earle, Jana Schmuck, and Yacouba Badolo.

Celia teaches choreography, improvisation, dance studies, dance administration, contemporary technique, yoga, and somatics. She also teaches Haitian traditional dance classes. Bambara has taught at institutions including INSAAC (National Arts Conservatory in Abidjan) as a guest artist and then as faculty, Cornish College of the Arts, UNC Asheville, and in West Baltimore at Coppin State University (an HBCU). Through teaching master classes and ateliers, she has contributed to professional dance and theater communities in Burkina Faso at Ecole De Danse Edit, Adreya Ouamba’s teaching series in Senegal through Premier Temps, and Un Pas Vers L’avant Festival in Abidjan, as well as too Kettly Noel’s Donko Seko Laboratories in Mali among others. In the US, Caribbean and Europe she has taught workshops at Links Hall, Dance New Amsterdam, Grinnell College, Shawl Anderson Studios, USC, Occidental College, University of the West Indies in Trinidad, Haiti at JAKA studios, Akademie Remscheid in Germany, and at Laborgras through the Body IQ festival in Berlin. She has been invited to teach at the Texas Dance and Improvisation Festival at Texas Woman's University.

Dr. Bambara’s work addresses the intersections of practice as research in contemporary and African diasporic dance as well as the work of other global contemporary artists. Her current book project addresses overlapping Jewish and African diasporas through questions of improvisation and processes as practices of interculturalism. This practice as research project situates African Contemporary Dance as a geo-political set of practices: research questions and answers that she has negotiated as a dance artist through creating work and dancing with artists in the Caribbean, US, and West Africa. The work centralizes African based improvisational practices in global contemporary dance by analyzing "de-colonial" views on the hierarchy of dance making and presentation. More information is available at www.celiaweissbambara.com

Lacina Coulibaly was born in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso. His professional dance career, deeply rooted in traditional African dances, later merged with contemporary influences to create a uniquely African choreographic expression. As a teenager, he was a member of urban Dodo groups and continued to explore his tradition by joining Les Bourgeons, a traditional dance and theatre company. In 1995, Lacina created the Cie Kongo Bâ Teria with Souleymane Badolo and Ousseni Sako. Their creations, Frères sans stèles (1999), Vin Nem (2001) and Hydou Bye (2004), toured the world and won international awards, including third place at SANGA, les Rencontres Chorégraphiques for Vin Nem, which toured more than 30 cities in Europe in 2002 and throughout the United States on the Movement (R)Evolution tour in 2004. He has also danced and choreographed with several international dance companies (Salia ni Seydou, Faso Danse Theatre, TchéTché, Urban Bush Women), and collaborated artistically with such artists as Emily Coates, Amy Sullivan, Wendy Jehlen, Kota Yamazaki, and Seydou Coulibaly. He also served as Associate Choreographer to the project Engagement Feminin (a training program designed to encourage female dances in Africa). As an experienced educator and teacher, he has taught at numerous universities (Brown University, New School, Florida University, Barnard College, CDC among others). He is currently Artistic Director of Compagnie Artistique Hakili Sigi and is on faculty at Yale University. He is an artist-in-residence at New York Live Arts where he is completing a new solo project for his company. Coulibaly is working on deeply describing his African pedagogy and has lectured on his methods and philosophies widely.

Christian Bambara is a dancer, choreographer, actor and teaching artist who is a dual citizen of the United States and Burkina Faso. He was born in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso, in 1977. Christian is a choreographer for the CCBdance project and has also co-directed the company until 2012. In September of 1993, he was selected as an actor and dancer to train in traditional dance, contemporary dance and choreography with the polyvalent company Bourgeon de Burkina. Christian has extensive experience in African theater as well as dance and has over time developed a strong African contemporary technique based on his movement research. He has studied with Salia Ni Seydou, Lassan Congo, Mathilde Monnier, Elsa Wolliaston and Robert Seyfried. Christian performed with the Bourgeon de Burkina from 1993 to 2002, touring Africa, Europe and French Guyana. He has performed his work at the Bodily Dialogues Festival and at the Fifth Choreographic Encounters of Africa and the Indian Ocean, two of the larger festivals in West Africa that are platforms for young artists. He has worked collaboratively with Company FEEREN, Company Evasion, the Atelier Theatre Burkinabé, the Gambidi Cultural Center, Brett Raphael, Olivier Tarpaga and Celia Weiss Bambara. Christian has also taught as an artist in residence at the Education Center for the Arts (ACES) in New Haven, Connecticut, the National Music School in Ouagadougou, the French Cultural Center in Burkina Faso, Romona High School for the Performing Arts, Ginga Cultural Center in Santa Barbara, Columbia College and Grinnell College. In addition, Christian has taught master classes at Grinnell College and Loyola University in Chicago, as well as teaching at studios and dance centers including Links Hall, Praxis Place, focusfish, Djoniba Drum and Dance Center and the Heartbeat House in Michigan, Los Angeles, Santa Barbara, Chicago, Connecticut, New York and Iowa.

Jessica Ray - Film direction and editing
Jana Schmuck - Dance
Yacouba Badolo - Dance
Kimathi Moore - Music and film

Past Collaborators:
Aboubakar Bomou Bassa - Music
Kayla Hamilton - Dance
Katherine Greaser - Lighting Design
Loren Earle - Film and editing
Jean-Luc Okou - Dance and Theater
Lassana Kamagate - Dance and Theater
Rob Bowen - Lighting Design
Souleymane Boumou - Costume Design
Dicko Yanogo - Dance
Archana Kumar - Dance
Dena Burman - Dance
Djenane St. Juste - Dance
Florencia Pierre - Dance and Theater
Flavienne Lago - Dance
Souleymane Koro - Costume and Set Design
Sam Bapes - Lighting Design
Barnus Sevi - Photography
Celoa Kouleon - Photography and Design
Momar Ndiaye - Dance
Elise Fitte-Duvall - Photography
Nadia Oussenko - Photography
Daniel Morel - Photography
Mariah Karson - Photography
Ashli Bickford - Film
Jerry Brown - Film
Digital Plus - Film (Abidjan)
Marquana Burgess - Photography
Leslie Frempong - Photography
Joe Bolado - Photography

Apprentice Dancers and Interns:
Binta N'Da - Dance and administration (Abidjan)
Aminata Traore - Dance and administration (Abidjan)
Lane Wagner - Dance (Asheville)
Becca Spritz - Dance (Asheville)
Alexandra Griffin - Dance (Asheville)
Kantara Souffrant - Dance and Praxis Place Intern (Chicago)
Amy Swanson - Dance and Praxis Place Intern (Chicago)
Yannick N'Goran - Administration (Abidjan)
Deshanay Pollard - Dance (Baltimore)
Medson Coulibaly - Dance (Abidjan)

Mentorship for projects has come from many sources, but we are especially indebted to Souleymane Badolo, Kettly Noel, Cynthia Oliver, Thomas DeFrantz, Rachel Germond, Germaine Acogny, Asimina Chremos and Anthea Kraut.