Homer Hans Bryant, founder of Chicago Multicultural Dance Center, was presented the inaugural Human Potential Award by the Foundation for Human Potential Nov. 8 during a day-long symposium at the Chicago Cultural Center.
“This award celebrates Homer Bryant’s achievements and his contributions to the world of dance, his commitment to the city of Chicago, and his devotion to the children he has served for the past 23 years,” said Andrea Gellin Shindler, founder and executive director of the Foundation for Human Potential. The award was presented during “Inspirations: The Arts, the Brain, and Human Potential,” a program highlighting the efforts of artists, educators, neuroscientists and psychologists, who are proving that despite seemingly insurmountable obstacles, the arts open the brain to unlimited potential.
“I really feel like I’ve been blessed with a gift,” said Bryant, who described the “life lessons” he learned from his daughter who suffered from Cerebral Palsy and died at the age of 28. His knowledge of dance was inspired by “that little angel who decided to make me her dad,” he said.
A former principal dancer with the Dance Theater of Harlem, Bryant has performed for the royal families of Norway and England, appeared on stage with the legendary Eartha Kitt, and danced with Diana Ross and Michael Jackson in the motion picture, The Wiz. He has worked with the Cirque Du Soleil productions of Mystere, Alegria, Quidam and Saltimbanco. Many of Bryant’s former students perform in various Cirque Productions around the world.