Originating from Zimbabwe, but now living in Australia, Gilbert Douglas is one of Southern Africaʼs most respected contemporary dance choreographers and teachers.
Gilbert has trained extensively in a variety of dance techniques including classically as a Ceccetti advanced teacher; and in contemporary dance (including Cunningham and Graham techniques); modern dance; jazz ballet; tap; afro- fusion and a wide variety of different traditional dances from different parts of the African continent.
In 1992, Gilbert was one of the founding members of the highly acclaimed Tumbuka Dance Company (Zimbabweʼs only Professional Contemporary Dance Company), and from 2004 – 2011 was the Companyʼs Artistic Director. Since 1993, Gilbert toured extensively –performing, leading dance workshops and classes - throughout African, American and European Festival Circuits, to wide and popular acclaim including: Zimbabwe, South Africa, Botswana, Malawi, Angola, Ivory Coast, Reunion Island, France, Germany, Belgium, Switzerland, Slovakia, UK, Denmark and Belize.
Gilbert has participated in Professional Choreographic Workshop for Traditional and Contemporary African Dance in Toubab Dialaw (Senegal) at the Ecole des Sables. Curated by one of the pioneers of contemporary African dance, Germaine Acogny, this experience paved way for the development of vocabulary and technique that Gilbert uses in many of his works.
In 2010 Gilbert was one of seven artists chosen worldwide to collaborate on a new work for the South African Festival Infecting the City. Gilbert devised and choreographed performances for both professional and community dancers in the resulting highly successful ritual performance work Quiet Emergency. In late 2011 Gilbert relocated to Australia. He was immediately invited to choreograph the Farewell Ceremony for the Woodford Folk Festival, which was performed to over 15, 000 people. In 2012 and 13 Gilbert was invited to co-choreograph with Jacob Boeheme as well as give community workshops for Moroopna College Wannick Dance Academy for AFL Dreamtime at the G. He gave workshops in Port Hedland in Pilbara that resulted in the creation of a performance dance piece for NAIDOC week.
Gilbert was invited to create a performance for creative mobilities by Victoria College of the Arts and RMIT for Performing Mobilities Conference 2015 in Melbourne. In 2016 he was invited by Ilbijerri Theatre Company to be rehearsal director for Balit Ngulu (Strong Voice), an Welcome you to Country ceremony to open White Night 2016.He currently works with Bounczn Dance Company, which consists of youths from different cultures and backgrounds, and continues to work as a freelance Choreographer and dance teacher and is passionate about cross-cultural artistic Sharing and collaborations. Gilbert is currently studying for a Master of Community Cultural Development at the Victoria College of the Arts.