A native of Atlanta, GA, Dionne Eleby began her dancing career under the direction of Marvette Baldwin at The Children’s Dance Theatre of Spelman College. There, she was introduced to and studied West African Dance under Sister Omelika Kuumba, a founding member of the all women dance, percussive, and vocal ensemble, Giwayen Mata. Switching gears from dance to theatre, Dionne attended the award-winning Visual and Performance Arts High School, Tri-Cities, in East Point, GA. There she studied acting, musical theatre, and dance, and won Best Actress for her role as “Mistress” in the musical Sarafina under the direction of Robert Connor, choreographer Dawn Axam, and Director of Fine Arts, Viola Turner. She was also a member of the south’s premiere African-American youth theatre company, The Freddie Hendrick’s Youth Ensemble of Atlanta. Youth wrote and performed original pieces that focused on topics such as apartheid, HIV/AIDS, self-esteem, and love.
A graduate of Elon University where she majored in Musical Theatre and minored in African-American Studies and Business Administration, Dionne was very instrumental in producing Pearl Cleage’s “Blues for An Alabama Sky”, the first African-American play to be a part of the main stage production season.
Upon graduating, Dionne joined the Washington, D.C. based dance company, Step Afrika!, the world’s first professional dance company dedicated to the art form and tradition of stepping. While the company primarily focuses on Stepping, company members are also introduced to the dance styles of Gumboot and Zulu. As a performer and Cultural Ambassador for Step Afrika!, Dionne has performed in over 25 countries, including the White House for former President and First Lady, Barack and Michelle Obama. Most recently, Step Afrika! had the opportunity to conduct a three week run of its production, “The Migration: Reflections on Jacob Lawrence” at The New Victory Theatre, a premiere off-Broadway theatre dedicated to kids and families.
Dionne has also worked for Nickelodeon on Norwegian Cruise Line and played the character May in the stage production of the PBS show “Sid the Science Kid.”
Dionne is a fitness instructor at ((305)) Fitness and a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.
She is excited to be joining the Bishop McNamara family!