A little about me
Nia Ashia Irene Shand was born in Manhattan, New York, and raised in Teaneck, New Jersey. She started dancing at her local dance studio before pursuing and obtaining her first degree black belt in karate. She combined karate with modern dance and Krump to develop her unique style when she attended Teaneck High School and joined the arts academy as a dance major. Nia graduated from Temple University with a BFA in dance. During her time at Temple, she performed in BFA and MFA concerts, Operas, flash mobs and musicals. Nia’s choreography was chosen to represent Temple at the annual American College Dance Association and received rave reviews.
Nia is a two-time Urban Bush Women (UBW) Summer Leadership Institute dancer and intern. As a result of her drive and determination during the institute, UBW founder Jawole Zollar and Dance Exchange founder Liz Lerman invited her to Tallahassee, Florida, to participate and collaborate on a groundbreaking project, entitled “Must Do Now.” From there, she became the face of the project that has toured all across the United States of America.
After graduating college, Nia danced with DAGADA Dance Company, based in Freiburg, Germany and performed with the company in Rennes, France, Freiburg and Offenburg, Germany. Now, Nia is producing her own work and collaborating with her partner, Ness white in New York City and Brooklyn.
Nia has also trained with Beau Hancock, Kun-Yang Lin, Filip A. Condeescu, Ellie Goudie-Averill, Dr. Kariamu Welsh, Jodi Obeid, Jillian Harris, Reggie Willison, Charles Anderson, Roni Koresh and more. She has been chosen for residencies with Gallim Dance and UBW. Nia has performed in The Philadelphia Fringe Festival, KYL/D's InHale Performance Series, Ailey Citigroup Theatre, The Outlet Dance Project's Day of Dance and more.