Cheryl Wilkins-Mitchell earned a BFA in Classical Ballet and minored in Modern (Horton) from the University of Cincinnati, College-Conservatory of Music (CCM). She is a member of American Federation of Television and Radio Artists( AFTRA). She danced with the Dance Theater of Harlem (apprentice), Contemporary Dance Theater of Cincinnati, Bill & Jacui Landrum Dance Theater, William Couser Dance Theater, R’Wanda Lewis Afro-American Dance Company, Ruby Millsap Dance Theater, Syracuse Ballet Theatre, Southwest Jazz Ballet and Theater Under The Stars (TUTS, Houston). Cheryl spent over a year touring in South America with a Walt Disney Productions and NBC Entertainment dance company. Locally she performed with Syracuse Stage, SSO, Syracuse Community Choir and the Paul Robeson Performing Arts Company (PRPAC) including their Trinidad and Tobago Tour of the acclaimed show “What’s Going On.” Shows: Cabin in the Sky, Death and the King’s Horseman, Bubbling Brown sugar, Buffalo Chips, Faith, Hope and Charity: A Tribute to Mary McLeod Bethune Films: The Main Event, Deathtrap, King of Comedy, Voices From The Edge TV: Blues and Gone WGBH Boston,For Heaven’s Sake Los Angeles.
Wilkins-Mitchell’s notable teaching credits include such institutions as the Dance Theatre of Harlem as assistant to Karl Shook (children’s class), Inner City Cultural Center in Los Angeles, the Northwest Houston Dance Academy, SU and LeMoyne College. Cheryl Wilkins-Mitchell was founder and director of the Onondaga Dance Institute for thirteen years. She is currently on faculty at SUNY Oswego in the School of Communication, Media and the Arts and has choreographed several of the theater productions—The April Witch, 1940’s Radio Hour, Big: The Musical, Little Shop of Horrors, Devils, Soldiers and Souls. She co-choreographed fully staged production of The Pearl Fishers for the Syracuse Opera. She is a select choreographer for the Society for New Music Vision of Sound. Wilkins-Mitchell served as the dance coordinator at the SU South Side Initiative Kuumba Project. Most recently served on the faculty of the Ballet and Dance Center and director of the DTS School.
Ms. Mitchell was a Teaching Artist in regional arts institutions for many years. She served on the NYSCA Dance Panel for three years and was a dance representative on Senator DeFrancisco’s Young Artist Development Program Board as well as a recipient of the DeFrancisco Individual Artist Award. Cheryl Wilkins-Mitchell is the recipient of numerous community awards; the Community Service Award from the Syracuse Chapter of the LINKS, Inc., the 2000 Martin Luther King Jr Unsung Heroes and Heroines Award from Syracuse University, the Marjorie Dowdell Fortitude Award from the Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., honoree of the National Council of Negro Women, and a Builders of Communities and Dreams Award from the Syracuse Commission for Women. Former Mayor Matt Driscoll proclaimed May 30, 2003 Cheryl Wilkins-Mitchell Day in the City of Syracuse, while former County Executive Nicholas J. Pirro recognized her work through ODI with a Community Recognition Day Award. Syracuse/Onondaga County NAACP honored her with the Freedom Community Service Award 2014.
Wilkins-Mitchell is the mother of two adult children - Masai and Aisha. Her mantra is to be “creatively progressive and culturally significant.” She looks forward to sharing the gift of dance with SCT.