Eleo Pomare

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Eleo Pomare (20 October 1937 – 8 August 2008) was a Colombian-American modern dance choreographer known for his politically charged productions depicting the black experience.

In 1947, he and his mother moved from Colombia, South America, to the United States, where Pomare attended New York's High School of Performing Arts. He founded a company in 1958, dismantled it to travel to Europe to study and perform with Kurt Jooss and Harold Kreutzberg, then returned to the United States in 1964 when he revived and expanded his company.[1] Productions include Missa Luba in 1965, Blues for the Jungle in 1966 (portraying life in Harlem), Las Desenamoradas in 1967 (based on Federico García Lorca's play The House of Bernarda Alba set to jazz by John Coltrane), and Narcissus Rising in 1968 (a solo portraying the psychology of a motorcycle gang member).

Pomare is often considered the angry black man of modern dance, although he did not consider himself angry or bitter, but that he is rather "telling it like it is".[2] "I'm labeled...angry...because I will not do what they want from a black dancer. They want black exotics... I have something to say and I want to say it honestly, strongly and without having it stolen, borrowed or messed over."[3]

The impact of Pomare as writer, dancer and choreographer has definitely helped many gain an understanding of the black experience.[4]

Pomare died of cancer in Manhattan.[5]


  1. ^ Annemarie Bean, A Sourcebook of African-American Performance: Plays, People, Movements, Routledge, 1999, p. 86.
  2. ^ Emery, Lynne Fauley, Black Dance From 1619 to Today, Princeton Book Co, 1988, p. 300.
  3. ^ Emery (1988), p. 298.
  4. ^ Emery (1988), pp. 298–301.
  5. ^ Kisselgoff, Anna (August 13, 2008), "Eleo Pomare, Dancer and Rebel, Dies at 70", The New York Times.