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 Alicia  Díaz
Alicia Díaz
Associate Professor of Dance
Africana Studies Advisory Board Member

Alicia Díaz joined the Department of Theatre and Dance at The University of Richmond in 2011. She teaches contemporary dance, improvisation, and choreography. Her decolonizing and inclusive pedagogical approaches are rooted in her commitment to activate dance as a tool for social change and the premise that the body is a site of knowledge that informs how we act in the world. Alicia is co-director of Agua Dulce Dance Theater, creating works for concert dance, museums, and site-specific locations. As a Puerto Rican contemporary dance artist in the diaspora Alicia’s choreographic work speaks to issues of memory and identity, migration, colonialism, and the legacy of slavery. Alicia has performed professionally with Complexions Contemporary Ballet, Andanza: Puerto Rican Contemporary Dance Company, Donald Byrd/The Group, Joseph Holmes Chicago Dance Theatre, Maida Withers Dance Construction Company, and numerous independent choreographers. Her own choreographic work has been presented in the United States, Spain, Puerto Rico, Cuba, Argentina, and Mexico. Alicia holds an M.F.A. in Dance from The George Washington University and she held teaching positions at Kent State University and Hope College prior to joining UR.


We Must Say Her Name: Activating Dance as a Tool for Social Change. 6PIC Blackademic Panel and Excellence Mixer. Hosted by Initiatives of Change, USA, I AM MY LIFE, and 6PIC Innovation Center. 2019.

Opening remarks: Pepatián Documentary, "Out of La Negrura/Out of Blackness." Center for the Study of Ethnicity and Race, Columbia University. 2018.

Improvisation and Diasporic Memory: A Performance Lecture. Cabral Center, John D. O’Bryant African American Institute, Northeastern University, Boston, MA.  March 29, 2018.

Diasporic Body Grammar: An Encounter of Movement and Words. Wilson College’s Black Box Theater, Princeton University, Princeton, NJ. December 2, 2016.

Improvising Identity: Bomba as a Point of Reference Between a Contemporary Dance Artist and a Percussionist. Center for Puerto Rican Studies, Hunter College, CUNY. May 14, 2016.

How...Do You Dance in Response to Works of Art? The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts (VMFA). May 15, 2015.

Landscapes of Dance Making: An Embodied Practice. The Joel and Lila Harnett Museum of Art, The University of Richmond. February 25, 2015.

Capoeira: Afro-Brazilian Martial Art Hidden in Dance. Boatwright Library, The University of Richmond. November 9, 2011.

Selected Publications

Latino Dance Forms in The United States. The Encyclopedia of Latinos in the United States.  Oxford University Press (2005) 

Featured in: Authentic Movement: Find Yourself in the Steps, by Shayna Samuels, Dance Magazine (July 2004).

Bomba, Capoeira, B-boying: Embodies forms of resistance in the African Diaspora,  Washington Square News, (March 2, 2004).

M.F.A., George Washington University
M.A., New York University
B.A., New School for Social Research
Contact Information
223 Booker Hall
(804) 287-6350
(804) 287-1841 (Fax)
Areas of Expertise
Contemporary Dance
Dance and Activism
Co-director of Agua Dulce Dance Theater