Theresa Ruth Howard began her training at the Philadelphia School of Dance Arts under Marion Cuyjet. The later she later studied at the Pennsylvania Ballet School before being her professional career at the age of 12 with the Philadelphia Civic Ballet Company. She was a member of the Dance Theater of Harlem, a founding member of Armitage Gone! Dance has worked extensively with choreographer Donald Byrd, and has been a guest artist with Complex ions Contemporary Ballet. As a dance educator Ms. Howard was a member of the Ballet Faculty at the Ailey School, for over 20 years, and has taught and choreographed internationally in conservatories, universities, festivals, and intensives.
As a writer Ms. Howard written for: The Source, Pointe, Expressions (Italy), and Tanz (Germany) Magazines, and is a contributing writer for Dance Magazine. Her articles on body image lead her to create mybodymyimage.com blog which offers tools (specifically for dancers) to create a healthier sense of self through principals of: Respect, Acceptance and Appreciation.
In 2019 she was invited to be a Jacob’s Pillow Scholar in Residence.Her Pillow Talk: Remembering Arthur Mitchell with founding DTH members Virginia Johnson, former principal dancer and current Artistic Director of DTH, and former soloist and Ballet Mistress Gayle Mckinney not only drew the largest audience for a Pillow Talk to date, but also received a standing ovation, the first in Pillow history.
In 2015 Ms. Howard founded Memoirs of Blacks in Ballet (MoBBallet.org) a digital platform that preserves, presents, and promote the Memoirs of Blacks in Ballet. She is a respected advocate and leader in the conversations surrounding diversity and culture in Ballet and the arts and is an internationally sought after diversity strategist, speaker and consultant. For the past four years she has been member of the design team for the Dutch National Ballet’s (DNB) the bi-annual conference Position Ballet a convening of over 40 European and international companies to dis cuss issues including: Heritage, Identity, Diversity, and the culture of Ballet. She curated the DNB 2019 Black Achievement Month photo exhibition paying homage to all of the Black Ballet artists who have danced with the company since1961.Ms. Howard also curated The Royal Opera House’s inaugural Young Talent Festival 2019, Symposium Exposure, Access and Opportunity: Exploring the Cultural Barriers to Ballet Training. She is a member of the Design and Facilitation Team of The Equity Project: Increasing the presence of Blacks in Ballet a three-year initiative, funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation which has assembled a cohort of 21 North American Ballet companies into a learning community to address the issue of the lack of diversity in the field. To address the issue of equity, in October 2019 they held their first MoBBallet Symposium(MBBS) a multi-generational personal development and educational intensive which convenes an elite and diverse faculty of black ballet professionals and pre-professional ballet students.
She has been a mentor for many of the young men and women that she has taught over the years.
“The only way to make the world a better place, is to be better people in it!” ~T’Ruth