Linda Yudin – Council Chair, Artistic Directors

Linda Yudin, founding artistic director of Viver Brasil, has devoted more than three decades to researching, performing and teaching Afro-Brazilian dance as embodied in Viver Brasil’s 21st century expression of Afro-Brazilian dance theater. With an eye toward maintaining “a living bridge relationship” between Los Angeles and Salvador, Bahia, Yudin continues to develop the company’s commitment to upholding Afro-Brazilian dance and cultural aesthetics through international cultural exchange and dedication to the development of a new generation artistic voices who will further the legacy of Viver Brasil as choreographers, composers, performers, and teaching artists.

Yudin has directed thirteen of Viver Brasil’s world premieres at the Ford Amphitheatre in Los Angeles, led the company on national and international tours with support from the NEFA/National Dance Project. She directed the VB’s 20th anniversary concert, Agô Ayó Spirits Rising with new work by Brazilian choreographers, Marina Magalhães (Cor da Pele) and Vera Passos (Pra Onde O Samba Me Leva). Additionally, she co-envisioned VB in a carnaval spectacle Bloco Afro Motumbaxé at the Hollywood Bowl collaborating with Bowl Orchestra and premiere of Revealed by Shelby Williams-Gonzalez at the Music Center’s Moves After Dark. Yudin created the artistic vision for Viver Brasil’s participation in the Viva Navidad Street Party at Disney California Adventure Park, currently in its seventh year.

Yudin has lectured, taught, published, and performed Afro-Brazilian dance at colleges, universities, elementary, middle and high schools, academic conferences, and with communities throughout the U.S., Mexico, Canada, Brazil and South Africa. Yudin was an adjunct faculty member at Santa Monica College from 1999- 2014, taught at UCLA in the Dance Department in 1994-95 and in 2015- present teaches her signature Afro-Brazilian dance course in the WAC|Dance Department. In September 2017, Yudin was recognized by the Consulate General of Brazil in Los Angeles for her dedication to the development of a robust Afro-Brazilian cultural presence in LA and beyond. She also received the excellence in teaching award from the board of directors of Dance Resource Center of Greater L.A./Lester Horton Dance Awards 2009.

Yudin envisioned the choreographic projects which garnered Viver Brasil two NEFA/National Dance Project awards (2007, 2009), touring throughout the United States, Canada and Mexico and the Engaging Dance Audiences grant administered by Dance/USA (2016-17). She is a recipient of a 2012 Cultural Exchange International (CEI) fellowship from the city of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs and the Sacatar Foundation. As an individual artist, she is a four-time Durfee Foundation grantee and most recently granted an Artist in Residence grant from the Department of Cultural Affairs of the City of Los Angeles. Her civic duties include chairing the Los Angeles-Salvador Sister City program. Yudin was also a consultant for WNET public television series, “Dancing”, in the “New World, New Forms” segment and the keynote speaker at the University of Cape Town, South Africa’s first international dance conference.

Yudin acknowledges her never ending study of Afro-Brazilian dance which has been under the tutelage of the most preeminent masters in Salvador, Bahia–the late, Raimundo Bispo dos Santos aka Mestre King; Nancy de Souza e Silva aka Dona Cici; Jose Ricardo Souza, Amelia Conrado, Emilia Biancardi, Gilmar Sampaio, Vania Oliveira, Rosangela Silvestre, Vera Passos, the late Joselita Morreira da Cruz Silva and continues to study with her husband, co-founder Luiz Badaró. She was mentored by the late Dr. Susan Cashion of Stanford University.

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