Iquail Shaheed


Grantee Cohort Spring 2022

Iquail Shaheed is a Philadelphia-based artist and activist whose work successfully integrates social justice into high-caliber performance and community-building. As the founder and executive artistic director of DANCE IQUAIL!, Shaheed creates new works and programs that center Blackness, Justice, and Joy.

Shaheed has worked with internationally acclaimed companies such as Compagnie Thor, Sean Curran Company, Ronald K Brown/ Evidence, and the Fred Benjamin Dance Company. He has also appeared in various Broadway productions including The Lion King, Hot Feet, and Super Fly, in addition to various films and television shows.

As an educator, Shaheed preserves the Horton technique by serving on faculty at the Ailey School, NAISDA Dance College in Australia, and as an associate professor of dance at Goucher College in Baltimore. Additionally, he is frequently engaged as master teacher at institutions throughout Africa, Europe, Australia, North America, and the Caribbean.

Shaheed has received grants from the Pew Center for Arts and Heritage, the National Endowment for the Arts, the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council, Samuel S. Fels Foundation, and the West Harlem Development Corporation. He is also the recipient of the Caroline H. Newhouse Award, the Suzanne and Larry Engman Award, Philadelphia Dance Award – The Rocky, and the Marion D. Cuyjet Award.

Shaheed received his training as a scholarship student at the Philadelphia Dance Company – Philadanco, Alvin Ailey American Dance Center, the Martha Graham Center for Contemporary Dance, Paul Taylor School, The Juilliard School, and Pennsylvania Ballet, among many others. He received a BFA in ballet performance from the University of the Arts, an MFA in Choreography from Purchase College, and is a Ph.D. candidate at Texas Woman’s University.