of the Baobab



Modern dance is a broad genre of dance often considered to have emerged as a rejection of or rebellion against, classical ballet. Although we explore various styles of modern dance, the Horton technique is the primary modern dance technique taught at the D.O.B.


The primary style of classical ballet taught at D.O.B. is the Cecchetti method, originated by Enrico Cecchetti (1850-1928) in Italy. Emphasizes seven basic movements in dance: Plier (to bend), Étendre (to stretch), Relever (to rise), Glisser (to slide or glide), Sauter (to jump), Élancer (to dart), Tourner (to turn).

Traditional Yoruba

Traditional Yoruba dance is called ‘ijo-ibile’ which is translated as ‘local/traditional dance’. Learning traditional Yoruba dance includes the spiritual song, dance, and history of the Yoruba deities known as Orisa. We also explore the traditional Yoruba secular dance that is often used as entertainment at many Yoruba festivals.

Hip-Hop Dance

Hip-Hop Dance is a style of dance with deep historical and social roots in African culture. At D.O.B. we explore hip-hop fusions with African Dance including contemporary movements that have evolved throughout the life of hip-hop dance.


Not to be confused with Afrobeat or Afroswing, is an umbrella term to describe popular music from West Africa and the diaspora that initially developed in Nigeria, Ghana, and the UK in the 2000s and 2010s. We teach and dance to Afrobeats which is less of a style per se, and more of a descriptor for the fusion of sounds flowing out of Ghana and Nigeria. Genres such as hiplife, jùjú music, highlife and naija beats, among others, were amalgamated under the 'afrobeats' umbrella.

Traditional West African

Traditional West African dance refers mainly to dances from one or more of the 16 countries located in the western region of Africa. Because each country consists of many cultural ethnic groups, customs, music and more, we provide history, geography and cultural context for each style and technique taught in our program.

About Us

The Daughters of the Baobab is a 10-week intensive dance and cultural youth development program. D.O.B seeks to cultivate skilled, cultured, disciplined, and connected young Afrikan women, in addition, to ensuring their positive development as dancers, sisters, and self-healers. With D.O.B. our daughters create authentic, healthy, and holistic relationships with their sisters. They also receive intense dance training in various genres of dance. The Omo Obinrin (daughters) are between the ages 7 – 16.

This program emphasizes endurance and stamina. Each class is 2-hours of non-stop training with moments of choreography for application of skill.
Due to the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic our program is completely virtual.
Our home facilities are located in Upper Marlboro, MD

DOB pushed our daughters toward excellence in performing while forming relationships.

Samantha Codes,
Mother of the Baobab

My daughter’s growth as a performer and most importantly her technique is phenomenal. The performance was AMAZING!

Christina Crowder,
Mother of the Baobab

I enjoyed seeing the daughters grow in technique and dance skill.

Beynu Osagyefo,
Father of the Baobab

Important Dates


Fall Session begins

Daughters of the Baobab Fall session begins. Come join the wonderful world of intense dance training and development. Our dance classes are conducted virtually with a few in-person, in-studio classes, following all the COVID-19 regulations.

Registration Ends!

Join Now! Registration for Daughters of the Baobab 10-week dance intensive closes. You do not want to miss this opportunity to dance in a community of dancers and sisters!

Awon Omode Idagbasoke (Youth Development Workshop)

Awon Omode Idagbasoke means youth development in Yoruba.

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Our youth development workshop focuses on the daughter and her character development. It is also geared towards skill development in various areas of developing authentic sisterhood. In this session, we promote personal development, strengthen social skills. We encourage positive social interaction and strengthen life skills by offering youth-centred discussions with peer enrichment and character-building activities

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5:30PM - 7:30PM
5:30PM - 7:30PM
1:00PM - 3:00PM

Weekly Schedule

Iya Ifanike
Samantha Salters
TUESDAYFrench st, 123
05:30 - 07:30 PMRebeca Hall
WEDNESDAYFrench st, 123
05:30 - 07:30 PMRebeca Hall
10 weeks
TUESDAYFrench st, 123
05:30 - 07:30 PMRebeca Hall
WEDNESDAYFrench st, 123
05:30 - 07:30 PMRebeca Hall
We Offer drop-in opportunities for those who wish to take class but can not commit to the schedule of the program.
We offer private classes in all genres of dance taught at DOB to provide additional training to those who wish to deepen their study and skill.
This offer is for the daughter who can only take class once a week during our program.

Keep In Contact With Us

Sign Up For Notification

Our Teachers

View available class schedules by location, time and day and for secure online registration.

Iya Ifanike Omowale

Iyanifa Ifanike Osuntoyin Omowale is a mother, an artist, a teacher, and a traditionalist. As an alumnus of Florida A&M University with two degrees in Theatre Performance and Psychology. Iya Ifanike has been able to exercise and continuously hone her talents as an artist and a teacher.

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She has studied dance forms such as ballet, jazz, hip-hop, modern, Afro-Caribbean, and traditional West African. Iya Ifanike has been dancing for 24 years studying under a variety of masters from various backgrounds such as Garth Fagan, Jawole Zollar, Joan Myers Brown, Camille A. Brown, E. Gaynell Sherrod, Lineen Farmer, Millicent Johnnie, Guy Thorne, Tyrell Rolle, and PJ Armstead-Williams. She has also had the unique opportunity to live in Nigeria for two years and extensively study the cultural dances and indigenous practice of the Yoruba people of Southwest Nigeria. While in Nigeria Iya Ifanike intensely studied various aspects of the indigenous customs such as dancing, drumming, song and more. It is in Nigeria where she studied and trained as a traditionalist in the Yoruba indigenous practice. As a teacher, she has over 10 years of teaching experience specializing in teaching dance and theatre arts. She spent a great deal of her focus on arts-integrated curriculums. Iya Ifanike has assisted in leading the implementation of an Arts-Integrated Curriculum for teachers school-wide at Apalachee Tapestry Magnet School of the Arts in Tallahassee, FL. She has choreographed a number of dances for musicals, dance concerts and more. She has directed and produced a number of showcases, performances and plays. Iya Ifanike brings to with her a plethora of experiences and wealth of knowledge.

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Samantha Salters is an alumnus of Kent State University where she received a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance Education and a Bachelor of Arts in Teaching English as a Second Language. She also received an M.F.A. in Dance and Certificate in Comparative Ethnic (Africana) Studies from the University of Colorado Boulder.

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Samantha was educated on the cultural traditions of Ghana by Nii Armah Sowah and was a member of Logo Ligi Dance Ensemble.
The blossoming of her teaching and artistic career has led Samantha to Ghana on several occasions, The Garth Fagan Summer Dance Institute, Humboldt State University, Davidson College, The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, St. Olaf College, Joy of Motion Dance Center, University of Cape Coast, Maryland Youth Ballet, CityDance DREAM, Dance Place, Howard University, Rennie Harris PureMovement and Ananya Dance Theatre. Now she has gracefully joined D.O.B. to offer our girls her gifts, talents, and brilliance.

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Neah Banks is an alumnus of Howard University’s BFA Musical Theatre department. Neah studied at Bronx Dance Theatre, training in Ballet, Contemporary, Tap, Jazz, Traditional West African and Hip Hop. She also studied at Repertory Company High School for Theatre Arts where she was introduced to Musical

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Theatre and jazz dance styles specific to theatre. While at Howard University she continued to train in the foundations of dance as well as specializing in Jazz and Tap. Neah comes to D.O.B. with the eagerness to share her talents and gifts with our daughters. We welcome her with open arms.

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Visit us today!

13024 Salford Terrace
Upper Marlboro, MD 20772

Mon - Fri: 9 AM - 5 PM
Sat - Sun: 12 PM - 4 PM