"an uncommonly deft combination of dance and verbal theater."

- Brian Seibert, The New York Times









“Samar Haddad King deftly melds styles from hip-hop and ballet to social dance and acrobatics.”

- Hedy Weiss, Chicago Sun Times

“The YSDT dancers move like this often, tender yet aggressive; tenacious yet desperate. The body subverts itself, becoming both weapon and wound.”

- Cleo Abramian, Hyperallergic

"Samar Haddad King’s propulsive choreography [is] equal parts rave stomping and sensuous writhing."

- Bob Verini, New York Stage Review


Engagement Programming


Yaa Samar! Dance Theatre offers residencies for university students. Partial and extended packages are available upon request. Click here for more information.


Public lectures provide insight into YSDT’s methods to create art across physical and political barriers, as well as geopolitical context. These multimedia presentations include footage of the creative process and performance excerpts, with discussion topics ranging from the performing arts to new media, Middle East, International and Women’s/Gender Studies. 


Yaa Samar! Dance Theatre views technique as a means of furthering our bodies as instruments for creative expression. Blending contemporary dance and theater to explore themes of repertory works, YSDT classes draw on visualization, improvisation and play to facilitate experiential, process-driven classes and workshops rooted in the following core values: 

Facilitating an environment of imagination/play in order to help participants make connections and find new solutions for problems inside and outside of the classroom. 

Validating the individual through empowered choice-making. 

Modeling the power of collective action by honoring diverse perspectives and a multiplicity of bodies, abilities, and experiences while working together as a group.

Centering the power of storytelling in pursuit of social justice. 

“The process the dancers went through creating Getting there, staying here was transforming. I watched Samar push the [Hubbard Street] second company both physically and emotionally. There was a visible growth of artistry.”

- Taryn Kaschock Russell,  The Juilliard School

“King's choreography is dynamic and athletic"

- Nancy Grossman, Broadway World


“[YSDT] defines the space within which human relationships take place. They shape the landscape of expectation and hope.... What ensues is unique, free of easy classification, and beautiful."

- Sara J. Hart, Explore Dance

“The combination of the dramatic subject matter and the technical ability and experience of [King's] dancers makes for an undeniable explosive combination.”

-Amanda Keller, idanz