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ABOUT PMDI

"Each dancer who takes the stage today will break barriers.
They will jump, turn, leap and push boundaries that exist within themselves and challenge how the world sees them. "

Princess Mhoon

The Princess Mhoon Dance Institute is an acclaimed dance institute located in Washington, DC . Having served thousands of families through our in-­studio and off-­site programs, we believe that dance is a catalyst for personal, professional and artistic development. 


Through the leadership of award winning Director & Choreographer Princess Mhoon, many students have realized professional careers on Broadway, the Concert Stage, and in Hollywood while others have developed self-esteem and life skills that translate their training from the studio, to the stage, to the real world. PMDI's impact has expanded to reach the White House. In February of 2016 the institute was invited to perform as a part of a Celebration of African-American Women in Dance hosted by First Lady, Michelle Obama. ​

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ABOUT PRINCESS MHOON

Founder & CEO

"With these legs, we are standing strong in our mission to deliver art and culture that will educate, unite, transform and heal our community through the power of dance 
No matter what."

Princess Mhoon is a choreographer, producer, educator, and scholar recognized in 2015 by HUFFINGTON POST as one of 26 Female Choreographers "You Should Know" and Dance Magazine's 2006 "Top 25 to Watch" in the world for the Women's Choreography Project titled This Woman's Work.  Mhoon is a second generation artist and entrepreneur who has set her sights on enhancing the artistic landscape of the Nation’s Capitol. In 2016 she was invited to participate as one of the region's leading dance leaders by First Lady Michelle Obama during her Celebration of Black Women in Dance; she also served as a panelist for The White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for African Americans during Women's History Month and acknowledged by the administration as Black Girl Change Maker.

 

Mhoon is also a 2015 Helen Hayes Award Nominee for Best Choreography in a Musical, a Helen Hayes winner for Best Musical, and one of 37 International artists invited to Lusaka, Zambia for solo performance and master classes at the 2015 Barefeet Theatre Festival for vulnerable youth sponsored by UNICEF. She is also a 2016 class member of Leadership Greater Washington (www.lgw.dc.org).

 

With work commissioned by the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and the DC Jazz Festival, Princess Mhoon has been called "A visionary of her generation." She is the Founder and Director of the Princess Mhoon Dance Institute with locations in DC and Maryland. Mhoon has served on faculty at Howard University, where she received a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Dance and a Master of Arts degree in Public History. Her research focuses on Dance History and the African-American experience in dance. In 2015, she was awarded the Owen Dodson DISTINGUISHED ALUMNI award from her Alma Mater.  Mhoon is currently on faculty at American University and a guest Director and Choreographer to main stage productions nationally.

 

A native of Chicago, Illinois, she began her training with Alyo Children's Dance Theatre, Joseph Holmes Dance Studio, and Muntu Dance Theatre of Chicago. Mhoon Cooper has received numerous awards and scholarships for her excellence in dance, including recognition from the American Dance Festival, Dance Magazine, Howard University, Career Transitions for Dancers, and the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. She has performed and toured with the world renowned Ronald K. Brown/Evidence Dance Company, Rennie Harris Puremovement, The Chuck Davis African American Dance Ensemble, Nathan Trice Rituals, and Deeply Rooted Productions. She is the founder of DANCING FEET, an integrated arts program that includes classes and workshops for schools and outreach institutions.


The opening of PMDI is the continuation of a life long commitment to the field of dance.

MEET OUR TEAM

Our team at PMDI includes enthusiastic administrators and experienced dance professionals.

Here are some faces you will see at our studio!

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Emily Raskin

Specials Programs & Administration

Emily brings more than 25 years of experience working with nonprofit organizations and with young people to her work at PMDI.   As a high school teacher and Director of Student Engagement at a DC Charter high school, she is skilled at organizing large events and keeping special events and daily schedules running smoothly.  When not teaching or at PMDI, Emily enjoys running, hiking, and reading.

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Irie D. Jones

Finance Manager

As a New Orleans native, our CFO, Irie Jones has always been part of a strong arts culture and community.  As a young child and in high school, Irie practiced dance as an expressive art and maintains a deep admiration for the art of dance.  After graduating from Spelman College, she accepted a seat with Howard University College of Dentistry in DC.  Her contribution to PMDI  lends itself to the unwavering fact that she supports the culture which ultimately empowers its dancers to make a positive impact in the community. 

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Chloe Thomas

Dance Instructor & Choreographer

Chloe Lynette Thomas, from Tyler, Texas, cultivated her love for dance in a quiet town, where her passion ignited at a small age. Her journey led her to graduate from Del Rio High School, having spent her formative years immersed in dance. Currently a junior at Howard University, Chloe is pursuing a major in Education with a minor in Dance. Her dreams extend to becoming an elementary school teacher and opening her own dance studio, driven by the desire to inspire others through the union of dance and

education. Chloe's narrative beautifully exemplifies the transformative power of pursuing one's dreams, marked by graceful steps along the way.

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Andrew Bamba

Executive Assistant

Andrew is a great lover of the arts and comes from a management and administrative background. He uses his skillset to ensure that our director maximizes her leadership in both DC and Chicago. Andrew is dedicated to PMDI's growth, and very receptive to new ideas and feedback. Born and raised in the Philippines, Andrew's perspective of how creativity meets structure continues to evolve as he learns from and contributes to the greater good of our community.

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Oyuna Adams 

Ballet Instructor & Choreographer

Oyuna Nadmitova-Adams is a native of Ulan-Ude, Republic of Buryatia, Russia. She has studied at The Buryat State Choreographic School, The East Siberian Academy of Arts. She has performed with the Moscow Ballet, 13yrs with Buryat State Opera and Ballet Theater and the Moscow State Ballet. Oyuna has joined us to teach Ballet the Vaganova method and leads our Studio Company in their advanced training, including pointe.

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LaQuanda Morgan

Ballet Instructor & Choreographer

Born and raised in Washington, D.C..  Started dance training at Duke Ellington School of the Arts  under the direction of Lynn B. Welters, Sandra Fortune Greene, Charles Augins, Dwyane Murray, Adrian Bolton, Nikki Sutton, Kathy Smith, and Treanna Alexander. Internships under Mike Malone and Tracie Jenkins. Summer training at the Ailey School Intensive in New York City. Performing around the Metropolitian Area as a freelance dancer and teaching Artist. Choreography works at the Kennedy Center, Duke Ellington School of the Arts and Howard University. Currently manages a dance studio boutique in Takoma Park. Facilitate  summer dance camp for SYEP through Department of Parks and Recreation. 

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