Bahiya Movement was founded in 2011 by mother/daughter team Afia and Nafi Thompson. Bahiya is a Swahili/Arabic word which means Beautiful.
Our mission is to create a safe, welcoming, body positive environment where everyone of all shapes, sizes, and genders are transformed into performing artists. By offering dance etiquette paired with traditional dance technique, members learn all while having lots of fun making beautiful movement.
Our vision is to cross and break barriers regarding body image and self-esteem through the art of dance. Our goal is to showcase that your body size, type, or gender does not defines you as a dancer, but rather the skill, technical training, creativity and love for the arts that defines the artist.
Afia “Beautifull One” Thompson
has been performing professionally since the age of 11 years old. Her dance roots began in the West African traditions. Over the past 20 years, Afia has performed nationally and internationally in other genres such as jazz, hip-hop, lindy hop, freestyle, and modern dance She is constantly refining her skills and versatility as a performer through yearly conferences, workshops, and performances. She continues to teach classes in the Oakland,CA community. Ms. Thompson is a performer whose skills continue to stretch
beyond the dance arena.
Nafi “Neon Blue” Thompson
has been dancing since the tender age of three, starting with Spelman College’s youth dance program in Atlanta, GA. She has studied West African dance with Diamano Coura West African Dance Company. Additionally, she studied Hip-Hop, Modern Jazz, and Ballet with Dimensions Dance Theater’s “Rites of Passage Program” and performed professionally with Dimension Extension Performance Ensemble under the direction of Latonya Tigner. Nafi currently holds the position of Assistant Dance Instructor for Dance Production at Skyline High School under the Direction of Dawn James. She loves to perform and looks forward to making a living out of it.