YENSA Festival, produced by Lua Shayenne Dance Company (LSDC), is an international biennial festival that celebrates the work of women in dance, from African and Afro-diasporic culture.

YENSA Festival invites audiences to engage and celebrate with us the incredible evolution of Black dance and have conversations about the diversity of African Diasporic aesthetics, its histories and politics from a female perspective.

Our next Festival is in AUGUST 2024!!

Our inaugural YENSA Festival was in 2022 and began with a series of workshops followed by a public talk and conversation. The closing weekend featured two different program performances at Daniels Spectrum’s Ada Slaight Hall on August 26 and 27; and August 28 closed the festival with an ATSIA CIRCLE – a dance and drum celebration for all to join in!

A special thanks to our administrator Monica Pain, Festival coordinator Samara DeSantos, Production manager and lighting designer Arun Srinivasan, Stage manager Tara Mohan, Assistant stage manager Tanvi Vyas, LSDC’s board of directors, our volunteers, support staff, partners, sponsors, audience and workshops participants.

YENSA Festival 2023 programming

We are thrilled to present four YENSA Festival dance projects, one in-person and three on social media:

YENSA Festival’s Time Capsules series highlights the recorded dance histories of Black dancers Ola Skanks and Ethel Bruneau in the 60s and 70s. Happy Black History Month! 

Are you ready for Phenomenal Black Women in Dance?! We celebrated International Women’s Day 2023 with an activation campaign on gender equity. Check out our project!

I GOT MOVES is a series led by five talented Black female dancers who will be teaching easy dance steps from a variety of dance styles. Dance from the comfort of your home every Saturday on Instagram and Facebook!

Africa Vibes with Imania Fatima Detry (Chicago, US) is a one-week dance and live drum intensive that we hosted April 17 to 23!

Stay tuned for our Fall 2023 workshops!

Follow us on IG & FB @yensafestival!

REMEMBER the next edition of YENSA Festival is in 2024! #YENSAFestival