Rena Butler


Choreographer, New Work

Rena Butler hails from Chicago, IL. She began her studies at The Chicago Academy for the Arts, studied overseas at Taipei National University of the Arts in Taiwan and received her BFA from SUNY Conservatory of Dance, Purchase College. Rena danced with companies such as Hubbard Street Dance Chicago (also a choreographic fellow), A.I.M by Kyle Abraham, Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Company, David Dorfman Dance, Manuel Vignoulle’s M/motions, The Kevin Wynn Collection and Pasos Con Sabor Salsa Dance Company. She was the first Choreographic Associate at Gibney Company in New York City, a position she held from September 2020 to June 2022.

Rena has choreographed works for includes BalletX, Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, Boston Dance Theater, San Franciso Opera, New Orleans Museum of Modern Art in collaboration with Academy Award-Winning jazz composer, Terrence Blanchard, CHTV Stories television program in Switzerland, a film short in collaboration with Third Coast Percussion x DevontĂ© Hynes/Blood Orange, The Young Choreographer’s Festival in NYC, The Ailey and Fordham University, TEDxChicago Virtual Salon 3.0: Design Your Life and more. In 2019, she was the recipient of the prestigious Princess Grace Award for Choreography and has been spotlighted in Dance Magazine’s On The Rise feature.

Rena has taught dance and choreographic workshops at L’Ecole Nationale SupĂ©rieure de Danse de Marseille in France, Macau Cultural Center in China, Ailey Camp Chicago and SUNY Conservatory of Dance, Purchase College.

Rena served on the Consortium for Chicago Dancemakers Forum for three years, was on the annual panel for Black Girls Dance in Chicago and co-created and directed DanceLab – free, choreographic course for Chicago teens, empowering participants of varying socioeconomic backgrounds and identities to find commonality in creation. She currently serves on Dancewave’s Artistic Advisory Council in NYC and as a dance and choreographic mentor for young, aspiring artists as part of The PointePeople Mentorship Program.