Deeply Rooted Dance Theater



Sidney R. Yates Gallery


South African choreographer Fana Tshabalala invokes resilience and healing in the face of unresolved apartheid politics. Followed by a discussion with artistic director Kevin Iega Jeff.


Joshua L. Ishmon, Dominique Atwood and Pierre Clark

Production Credits

Choreography: Fana Tshabalala

Music: Nicolas Aphane


About the Piece

In July 2017 South African choreographer Fana Tshabalala completed a three-week residency with Deeply Rooted Dance Theater to create an American-focused adaptation of his work INDUMBA, created to illuminate the perpetual impact of apartheid politics in his native South Africa. “Indumba” means African healing hut, and is a work of stirring resilience and reconciliation. 

About the Artist

Website: deeplyrooteddancetheater.org

Artistic Team

Kevin Iega Jeff, Co-Founder & Executive/Artistic Director

Gary Abbott, Co-Founder & Associate Artistic/Production Director 

Nicole Clarke-Springer, Dance Education Director

Joshua L. Ishmon, DRDT Rehearsal/ Emerging Choreographers Showcase Director


Production Team

Sarah Lackner & Dustin Derry, Production Management, Stonewolf Studios, Inc.


About Deeply Rooted Dance Theater


The mission of Deeply Rooted Dance Theater (DRDT) is to re-imagine and diversify the aesthetics of contemporary dance by bringing together modern, classical, American and African-American traditions in dance and storytelling. Through its uncompromising pursuit of excellence, DRDT seeks to demonstrate how art and beauty play a transformative role in Chicago, the nation and the world.



Through engaging in dance, DRDT is a creative community dedicated to nurturing artists, supporting human relationships, and sharing common values.



  • We believe art is fundamental in forming community.

  • We pursue excellence—nurturing individual brilliance and authentic voices.

  • We recognize the relationship between the aesthetic and the political: the impact of art on society, therefore we hold ourselves accountable for our vision and strive to be ethical both in our art and our lives.

  • We realize that sound financial management enables growth; we aim to provide the conditions that support our dancers and staff in achieving this.

  • We commit ourselves to constructive and compassionate communication when in the midst of conflict.


We find joy in working together, creating beauty, and being.