Theatre arts major Shartoya Jn. Baptiste merges her scenic design and choreography talents to create dance concepts for celebrity Caribbean artists.
Theatre arts major Shartoya Jn. Baptiste is energy in motion. A Caribbean dancer, choreographer, dance and drama teacher, Jn. Baptiste hails from Saint Lucia. Luckily, she brought her talents and aspirations to Towson University.
“Attending TU was one of the best life decisions I have made,” Jn. Baptiste says. In the Department of Theatre Arts, she explored theater design and production and stepped into scenic design. Jn. Baptiste’s design for Antigone — an excellent example of the kind of work she developed in the theatre arts program — was the first feature of the week in the United States Institute for Theatre Technology (USITT).
“My passion for choreography effortlessly extended to set design. Creating movement in a space through dance easily transformed to creating an atmosphere and location in a space through set design.”
While her creative ideas are her own, she is inspired by Professor Daniel Ettinger, the department’s scenic design professor. She jokes that he may not know he is her mentor, but he is. She admires his immense knowledge of old school techniques and new school technology and says there is no idea that Ettinger cannot bring to life. He is just one of the many professors that make the College of Fine Arts and Communication a special place to learn.
Jn. Baptiste maintains an exceptional GPA in addition to working full-time and hosting dance classes via her YouTube channel. Her classes are designed to develop and nurture positive energy through shared dance.
Under her scenic designer brand, SHR (pronounced “shur”), she hosts an international cultural dance workshop called The SHR Experience that supports dance communities in Saint Lucia. Currently, she is creating dance concepts that merge her scenic design and choreography talents with a goal to work with celebrity Caribbean artists.