The Male Initiative

Pre-Professional Training Program / Urban Dance

The Male Initiative was founded in 2012 by Shavar Blackwood with the mission to redefine the dance industry’s landscape and the standards expected of male dancers. Specifically, TMI strives to positively affect social norms and perceptions of male dancers and ultimately to promote the dance industry for male dancers with a focus on the genres of Urban and Hip Hop. Primarily catered to male pre-professional dancers, ranging in age from 16-24, the TMI program carefully auditions students to ensure a good fit in TMI and the program’s culture and values: brotherhood, development, achievement, quality and consistency. From there, the dance company tailors to students’ individualized professional development by getting to know each student on a personal level. Then attention is focused upon individual needs and specific weaknesses are targeted and improved.

Today, The Male Initiative continues to professionally develop, mentor and introduce pre-professional male dancers to industry standards of dance, enrich students with the skills and tools required to maximize their potential as well as to expose them to the professional dance industry and network in Toronto.