Diarra K. Cummings, a native of Brooklyn, NY, began her dance training at, The Henry Street Settlement, on the Lower East Side of Manhattan, at age five. She then went on to study ballet with, Lynn Schneider at Brooklyn Dance, formerly located in Park Slope, Brooklyn. Noticing Diarra's growing ability, she urged her to audition, at age twelve, for the school at the Dance Theater of Harlem.

Upon acceptance, Diarra was awarded a full financial scholarship and continued her ballet training with Iris Cloud and Walter Raines and studied tap under Rachael Sekyi. When she turned fourteen, Diarra was awarded a merit scholarship to Professional Children's School and was promoted to the professional training program at the DTH school, studying with Celia Marino, Fredrick Franklin and Carol Sumner.

Under the artistic direction of Arthur Mitchell, Diarra made her debut with the professional company of the Dance Theater of Harlem at age sixteen in Creole Giselle . She performed as part of the corps de ballet at New York State Theater at Lincoln Center and at The Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C. Diarra toured domestically with the company, dancing in Fokine's Firebird; Alvin Ailey's The River; Jeffrey Holder's Dougla; Balanchine's The Four Temperaments and Arthur Mitchell's John Henry. She graduated with honors from Professional Children's School in 1994.

Continuing on her artistic journey, Diarra was awarded a Summer Fellowship in 1998 to the Alvin Ailey American Dance Center, studying with Ana Marie Forsythe, Alexandra Wells and Matthew Rushing. With a growing interest in modern dance, she began working with contemporary choreographers in the New York City area, assisting prima ballerina Virginia Johnson on various projects, dancing with the Forces of Nature Dance Theater under Abdel Salaam, and performing in works by Nina Buisson. Diarra joined Garth Fagan Dance in 2001 and toured with the company performing in his works Jubilee, Nkanyit, Prelude, Trips and Trysts, Words in the Line/Music of the Shape, and Woza.

In addition to working as a free lance performer, Diarra also choreographs and teaches dance to children. Diarra is currently a ballet instructor at The Preparatory Center for the Performing Arts at Brooklyn College and has taught dance at Manna House Workshops in East Harlem, Catherine McAuley High School in Flatbush, Brooklyn and choreographed West Side Story for William Cullen Bryant High School's annual spring musical. Diarra loves working with young people of all ages and levels and feels that we all should have the opportunity to explore the arts to nurture the innate creativity in all of us.





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