B121 Lathrop Hall
1050 University Ave
Madison, WI 53706-1304
Chris Walker is a professor of dance and founding artistic director of the First Wave program in the Office of Multicultural Arts Initiatives at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He is the co-artistic director for the #BARS Workshop at The Public Theatre in NYC, a lab series for artists to investigate the intersection between contemporary verse and theater, created by Rafael Casal and Daveed Diggs. He is also a senior choreographer with the National Dance Theatre Company of Jamaica, and program director for the New Waves Dance & Performance Institute in Trinidad & Tobago.
Walker creates contemporary dance, theater and performance artwork rooted in the visual and performance cultures of the African Diaspora. He works in the disciplines of dance, theater, film/video. He served as movement director for two-time Pulitzer Prize winner Lynn Nottage’s Mlima’s Tale, which ran at the Public’s Martinson Hall and he is the recent choreographer for The Secret Life of Bees, The Musical produced by Atlantic Theatre in NYC. Walker has collaborated with Laura Anderson Barbata to develop Jus Luv/Rolling Calf a Jamaican ‘mas’ for her Intervention: Indigo project, a performance that was presented in the 2015 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in Brooklyn, NY.
His concert dance work has been presented in Europe, Asia and throughout the Americas. His collaboration with Kevin Ormsby and KasheDance in Toronto titled FACING Home: Love & Redemption is currently and has been on tour internationally since its premiere in 2015. He has received numerous international and national grants and honors for his creative research work. He recently completed a Romnes Fellowship, which supported his research on homophobia in the African Diaspora and in 2020 he was named one of the School of Education’s Impact 2030 Faculty Fellows.
Photo of "Chant Sunrise" from Walker's Facing Home: Love & Redemption project, choreography by Chris Walker & KasheDance's Kevin Ormsby.
- MFA Dance: Research, Choreography and Performance, State University of New York - College at Brockport, 2004
- BFA Dance: Choreography and Performance, State University of New York - College at Brockport, 2000
- Professional Diploma Dance Theatre Production, Edna Manley College of the Visual and Performance Arts, 1999