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Boulder, CO

Photo by Christopher Michael Carruth

Louisiana native and Colorado transplant, Helanius J. Wilkins is an award-winning choreographer, performance artist, educator, certified Colorado Change Leader, and artivist (artist-activist). Wilkins's creative research and projects are rooted in the interconnections of American contemporary performance, cultural history, and identities of Black men. His projects examine the raced dancing body and ways ritual can access knowledge. He uses remembering to piece together and liberate Black identity through performance. Having choreographed 60+ works, honors include Pola Nirenska Award for Contemporary Achievement in Dance (DC’s highest honor, given by the Washington Performing Arts Society, 2008); Kennedy Center Local Dance Commissioning Project (2002 & 2006). Foundations/organizations including NEA, NEFA National Dance Project, and National Performance Network (NPN) have supported his work. He founded and artistically directed D.C.-based EDGEWORKS Dance Theater, an all-male dance company predominantly of Black men that toured nationally and internationally (2001 - 2014). He is Associate Chair and Director and an Associate Professor of Dance at CU Boulder. He is a member of the National Board of Directors of the American College Dance Association (ACDA) for the Northwest region, and completed a 4-year term to the Colorado Council on Creative Industries that he was appointed to in 2018 by Governor Jared Polis. His current work is a multi-year, multi-outcome art and humanities work titled The Conversation Series: Stitching the Geopolitical Quilt to Re-Body Belonging.

Ideas in Motion: 21st Century Dance Practices (2022)

Research Residency (2022)

Creative Residency (2023-2024)

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