It's Trailblazer Tuesday! Today we celebrate the arts and the first Artistic Director of the Belize National Dance Company, Ms. Althea Sealy.

Althea Sealy, born to Cutbert Sealy and Mitt Smith on December 26, 1960 in Belize City, is renowned for her love of and dedication to the arts. Unknowingly, Althea earned her place among outstanding Belizean female firsts when she became the first Artistic Director of the Belize National Dance Company (BNDC) in October 1990.

Althea Sealy has been dancing since she was eight years old, starting with the late Bob Reneau in the 1960s and 1970s. While her academic training was completed at Holy Redeemer primary school and Wesley College, she travelled regionally and internationally for her professional training in the USA, Cuba and Jamaica. She trained under the late talented Professor Eduardo Rivera of the National Dance Theatre of Santiago de Cuba.

“For the love of dance and country” may be the best way to describe the contribution of Althea Sealy over the past two decades in her volunteer role as Artistic Director. Her dance career has evolved through various leadership roles in several dance groups, including Creative Dancers. Today she leads a company that creates and choreographs an array of dances that reflects the essence and diversity of Belize. Under her direction the creations have included modern, classical, folk and interpretive dance that depict many social issues such as HIV, cancer, domestic violence, street crimes and others.

As Artistic Director, Althea’s responsibilities include decision making, event planning, and productions as well as development of short and long term plans for this nonprofit artistic group. Her most important future role is the transitioning of the BNDC in the 21st century to continue to grow and reflect the culture of Belize in all its relevant essence and diversity. She looks forward to the celebration of the BNDC’s 25th anniversary in 2015. This anniversary coincides with her own twenty-five years of service as Artistic Director.

Althea Sealy is the proud mother of two adult daughters who have amplified her joy with her teenage grandson and preschool granddaughter. Althea has one brother and one sister.