A Message From Executive Director Kellee Edusei About O’Shae Sibley

August 4, 2023

Contact: Johanna Tschebull

Dance/USA mourns the loss of O’Shae Sibley, a young, Black dancer who was murdered in Brooklyn on Saturday night. O’Shae was a member of the Vogue and Ballroom community in New York City, a student of the Ailey extension program, and a former apprentice of Philadanco!’s D/2 company.   

We are heartbroken that O’Shae’s life was cut short by a horrific act of hate. His murder comes at a time of increasing violence against LGBTQIA+ people and a rise in anti-LGBTQIA+ legislation. GLAAD, which been tracking escalating violence against LGBTQIA+ individuals, reports that O’Shae’s murder is the fifth time an LGBTQIA+ person has been killed in recent weeks. The ACLU is tracking 492 anti-LGBTQIA+ bills across the U.S. that have been introduced during the 2023 legislative session. This rise in violence, hate crimes, and discrimination is unacceptable. Any artist whose artistic practice / form of expression is rooted in their identity is at risk. 

Dance/USA is in solidarity with the LGBTQIA+ community and we support our LGBTQIA+ colleagues and allies in the Dance/USA member community and greater dance ecosystem.  

Today we are sharing a message of solidarity and collective action for O’Shae Sibley from our colleagues at Dance/NYC, which includes information about upcoming memorials for O’Shae and ways to take action.  

Dance/USA is committed to deepening our connections so that we can more fully embody our mission to champion an inclusive and equitable dance ecosystem. The work to fight for justice and be an ally for BIPOC, Disabled, LGBTQIA+ and other historically excluded members of our community is ongoing and we will continue to engage our membership and the broader dance ecosystem in these conversations. 

O’Shae, may you rest in power.  

With my deepest gratitude and in humble service,  
Kellee Edusei  
Executive Director      

About Dance/USA
Propelled by our belief that dance can inspire a more just and humane world, Dance/USA will amplify the power of dance to inform and inspire a nation where creativity and the field thrive.

Established in 1982, Dance/USA champions an inclusive and equitable dance field by leading, convening, advocating, and supporting individuals and organizations. Dance/USA’s core programs are focused in the areas of engagement, advocacy, research, and preservation. Learn more about Dance/USA at danceusa.org.

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