Tumi Johnson was raised in Ibadan, Nigeria and Nashville, Tennessee.
A former Presidential Scholar in the Arts, she studied dance and environmental biology at Rice University, where she received her B.A. She has since studied with Liz Lerman, Nia Love, Alexandra Beller, and Fiona Alderman. As a member of the NYC-based Roza Dance Company, Tumi performed in multiple venues including Dance New Amsterdam, as part of the Movement Research Open Performance shows, and as part of Arts East NY’s outreach projects.
In the fall of 2011, Tumi moved to Paris and spent six months in France creating and refining the concepts behind her ‘poemdances’: solo dance pieces crafted from original poetry.
Tumi has since performed the poemdances in several venues in NYC (including Judson, Dixon Place, and as part of the Performance Mix Festival), L.A. (at REDCAT) as well as outside the U.S. in France, Haiti, and Thailand, among other places. She lives and works internationally as a dancer and holistic medical doctor.