XABA, Nelisiwe (1972- ). South African dancer and choreographer (also called Neli Xaba).
Nelisiwe Xaba was born and raised in Soweto (South Africa), and received a scholarship to study at the Johannesburg Dance Foundation (JDF). After studying dance in London (with a 1996 Ballet Rambert Scholarship) she returned home to join PACT Dance Company, where she was company member for several years, and with whom she toured to Europe and the Mideast. She worked with a variety of choreographers, visual and theater artists, particularly Robyn Orlin, with whom she created works such as Keep the Home Fires Burning, Down Scaling Down, Life after the credits roll, and Daddy I’ve seen this piece six times before and I still don’t know why they’re hurting each other, which toured for several years in Europe and Asia, winning the Olivier Award for Outstanding Achievement in Dance. In 2001, Ms. Xaba began to focus on her own choreographic voice, creating solo and group dance works that have been performed in Africa and Europe, including Dazed and Confused, No Strings Attached 1, No Strings Attached 2, Be My Wife(BMW) (commissioned by the Soweto Dance Project), and Black!.. White and Plasticization. Ms. Xaba has also collaborated as choreographer and dancer with fashion designers, opera productions, music videos, television productions, and multimedia performance projects.