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MEET TRACI GREENE Creative Director

Traci Headshot 5

Traci Greene is the President and Founder of Culture Arts Initiative, Inc., which is a 501c3 non-profit arts organization designed to enrich the lives of young people through the performing arts. Greene began her classical ballet training in Chicago, Illinois, at the age of six under the direction of Madame Elizabeth Boitsov of the Bolshoi Ballet. She continued her dance training in high school and became an NAACP Act-So Awards medalist in dance. After graduating from college, Greene continued her performing arts studies in Los Angeles and New York City at some of the nation’s top dance institutions. In Los Angeles, Greene landed two leading roles in the Los Angeles production of The Chocolate Nutcracker, which starred a young Misty Copeland and was choreographed, directed, and co-starred Debbie Allen.

Greene concluded her professional studies at the American Musical and Dramatic Academy in New York City where she received numerous awards in acting and dance before landing her first international tour of a West Side Story. On tour, she was appointed the position of female dance captain by Tony Award nominated Broadway choreographer/director, Joey McKneely. In 2007, Greene rejoined the cast of a West Side Story through special invitation in Paris, France for its 50th Anniversary tour. She has also danced for acclaimed Broadway choreographer Donald Byrd on the musical workshop of “The Color Purple on Broadway” which was later produced by Oprah Winfrey, before relocating to Houston. Greene continued to train, teach, and choreograph throughout the U.S. before finally opening her award-winning dance studio, The Houston Dance Lab, in 2010.

HUN Full Cast 2018

Greene (center) with 2018 cast of Houston's Urban Nutcracker.

In 2013, she founded the Lab Performing Arts Initiative, (now called Culture Arts Initiative, Inc.) a 501(c)3 non-profit organization designed to enrich the lives of young people who are under-represented in the dance world due to affordability, availability, or lack of exposure to the arts. In 2015 and 2016 the Lab Performing Arts Initiative, Inc. provided scholarships to eight Houston area youth to train in New York City at the highly acclaimed Dance Theater of Harlem and Alvin Ailey American Dance Center.

Culture Arts Initiative’s outreach and scholarship programs, have helped many young dancers gain the opportunity to train at some of America’s most prestigious dance institutions including, the American Ballet Theater, Alvin Ailey American Dance Center, the Joffrey Ballet, Debbie Allen Dance Academy, the Dance Theatre of Harlem, Complexions Contemporary Ballet, New York City Dance Alliance, Texas Ballet Theatre, and the Radio City Rockettes Summer Intensive programs. Additionally it has provided scholarships for deserving young dancers to attend collegiate undergraduate dance programs at Fordham University/Alvin Ailey Program, the University of Texas at Austin, University of California, Los Angeles, Alabama State University, Point Park University, Nazareth College, the American Musical and Dramatic Academy-L.A., Sam Houston State University and the Juilliard School. Plus, full tuition scholarships to attend the Houston Ballet Academy. Thanks to the support and success of Houston's Urban Nutcracker, Culture Arts Initiative, Inc. has awarded 90,000 in scholarship awards to underserved young dancers to date.

In 2020, the Lab Performing Arts Initiative’s Board of Directors, officially changed its name to Culture Arts Initiative, Inc. to reflect its continued mission to empower, support, and educate youth who are under-represented in diverse communities throughout the United States. Traci and the work of Culture Arts Initiative, Inc. can be seen on ABC's Localish, the Houston Chronicle, Good Morning America, the Houston Defender Network, and Brown Girls Do Ballet.

Traci is married to Adraon Greene, Esq. who is the Chairman of the 100 Black Men of Metro Houston. They have one son AJ.

Traci is a proud recipient of the 2023 Top 30 Most Influential Women of Houston award, the 2023 MLK Community Servant Leader award, the 2018 recipient of
Houston Health Fest’s “Metamorphosis Award” and the 2018 “Black Girl Excellence Award.”

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