May 17, 1988 – May 14, 2020
Marcus White played an important role at ASU as a faculty member in the dance program, a cross-Herberger Institute collaborator, a dedicated mentor, and a deeply engaged and committed community artist-scholar-activist. He held an appointment as assistant professor in dance in the School of Film, Dance and Theatre (now the School of Music, Dance and Theatre), where he served as faculty lead for Urban Sol and Come AZ You Are, and he was a program advisor for Projecting All Voices. As an artist/scholar, he dedicated his career to working in the long legacy of the Black Radical Tradition and speaking truth to power.
“As artists, we all make decisions about the narratives we want to craft. In dance, particularly with this legacy of abstraction, particularly in this post-modernist movement, there is this distillation of the body or this attempt to distill the body, to get it to its purist form and pure movement, looking at the body in space, devoid of narrative. But for me, as a Black same gender loving contemporary artist, my life experience colors my ability to do that. Because we are working with the body, we are always constructing narratives. We are always making meaning on bodies, regardless of the choreographer’s intent. I embrace that.”
– Marcus White