Nathifa Dance Company
The Nathifa Dance Company and Outreach, Inc. is a children's African dance and drum company founded in 1990 by LaVondia Bryant-Square. Originally called Square Biz, the company specializes in traditional West African dances from Mali, Congo and Senegal, as well as dances from New Guinea and the Caribbean.
She started the business with her then-husband. In 1993, after her divorce, Bryant-Square changed the name to "Nathifa" for her daughter, and by the following year she took on the running of the company and its outreach programs full-time. The company gained non-profit status in May 2006.
Nathifa teaches classes in traditional African dance forms as well as classical ballet and modern forms such as jazz. The drum program focusses on the djembe and doun-doun, complementary drums and techniques which structure traditional dances. Other learning opportunities in acting, praise dance, and choreography are also offered.
The performance group practices regularly at Harrison Recreation Center. It performed at the 1993, 1994 and 1998 City Stages and had a central role in the June 2007 production Reclaiming the Village: Dance is Back, along with M. A. D. Skillz Dance Company, and others.
- Folse, Molly (June 28, 2007) "Reclaiming the Village: The rhythmic journey of the Nathifa Dance Company." Birmingham Weekly.