Originally from Detroit, Michigan, Briana Ashley Stuart is a successful international dance artist, teacher, choreographer, and entrepreneur who currently lives and works in Brussels, Belgium. After receiving her Bachelor’s of Fine Arts in Dance from the University of Michigan, she performed and taught, nationally and internationally as an independent artist, as well as with StepAfrika!, the world’s first dance company dedicated to the art form of stepping, and contemporary dance company SJEwing & Dancers. In 2015, she served as the assistant choreographer on the American Theater Company’s production of The Project(s) in Chicago, IL, rated 4 stars by the Chicago Tribune. She has received numerous choreographic commissions from the Dance Place New Releases Showcase, Dance Ethos Dance Company, Joy of Motion Youth Dance Ensemble, the University of Michigan, Dance Ethos and the 2016 March on Washington Film Festival.
Since moving to Brussels, Belgium in 2017, Briana has expanded her career as a performer with ZIKIT, 4Hoog Children’s Theater, Les Brigittes, Dominique Models, and as an Artist-In- Residence with Citylab Pianofabriek. Within the past year, she performed with ZIKIT in Doha, Qatar at the Global E-Games Opening Ceremony and Nadine Baboy’s piece Les Désintégration Culturelle at the KVS Theater in Brussels as well as worked as choreographer and dance coach for Playwright Dalila Hermant’s Theater Piece titled Her(e) which premiered February 2020 in Gent, Belgium. Most recently, KVS Theater Brussels commissioned her new solo work “Becoming Together” performed at the two-day outdoor show, As long as you are there, and the Schowburg Kortrijk Theatre in Kortrijk, Belgium.
In Addition, she founded the arts organization, S.T.U. Arts Dance whose mission is to move Belgium’s communities to See. Think. Understand. the Art of Dance for personal, professional and community development. Briana’s work and story has been featured in the I Love Brussels Online Magazine, the Behind the Story Podcast, the Brussels Express, BX1 Media, Accountable, Count Me In Podcast, BRUZZ Media, Radio France Internationale, and Together Magazine.
“Briana was first introduced to me by Jessica Fogel, chair of the University of Michigan’s Department of Dance, as a performer who would be the perfect addition to a very special event being planned. In my role as Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer for the School of Music, Theatre & Dance, I was in charge of organizing the U-M Bicentennial Colloquia: Social Justice and the Performing Arts, featuring U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor. Briana’s performance was the perfect complement to an evening of extraordinary talent depicting the power of hope, courage, and love. In particular, Briana’s energy and way of engaging the audience was a refreshing moment amongst the collection of performances. Personally, my daughters were enthralled by her movements and the joy she radiated. Her presence left a mark on their memory that surpassed all else that evening for them. It was truly a pleasure to have experienced her talents!”
Freyja Harris, Chief Diversity & Inclusion Officer, U-M School of Music, Theatre & Dance
Among the collection of virtuosic solos highlighted in the piece, the one that stood out most was Briana Ashley Stuart’s emotionally isolating section, which used a follow-spot type trick with the top lights. Stuart maintained such composure that it felt that she was hopeful and alone in a struggle against something greater than what an individual can endure, or perhaps understand.
Taryn Packheiser Brown DC Dance Journalism Project Review of “Analog” by S. J. Ewing & Dancers
“Briana Stuart est une artiste complète qui mérite d’être rencontrée. Son aura solaire et positive va vous embarquer dans son univers en un rien de temps ! Optimisme, talent, générosité, énergie, passion… Elle possède toutes les atouts qui font d’une professeure et danseuse un mentor qualifié pour vous faire évoluer vite et bien. Pour avoir suivi des stages avec elle, je peux vous assurer qu’elle va vous pousser dans la bonne direction, à savoir vers le haut et vers l’avant ! Affaire à suivre, ne manquez surtout pas la chance d’apprendre avec cet instructeur de qualité made in USA !”
Lou Pradas, Belgian Artist/Performer/Teacher