- BA, Bowdoin College
- MFA, University of California, Los Angeles
Esther Baker-Tarpaga is a white cis-gender choreographer, interdisciplinary artist, parent, and activist citizen. Her dances are site-responsive, collaborative, and center art as social action. She is co-founder of Baker & Tarpaga Dance Project, a transnational dance company based in Ouagadougou and Philadelphia. She is co-founder of Propelled Animals, an interdisciplinary arts and social justice collective and recipients of a MAP Grant, USAI Fund, and part of Trade School Philly Detroit. She is part of Earthdance’s Interdisciplinary Artist Consortium and is an incubated artist at Headlong Philadelphia. She currently teaches at Temple University's Boyer College of Music and Dance. She recently performed at ArtYard, New Jersey, The Chicago Architecture Biennale, No New Idols Festival in Riga, Latvia, Lynden Sculpture Gardens, Milwaukee, Grinnell College, The Englert Theatre, Tamadia Arts Festival France, The Wassaic Festival NY, LabBodies Baltimore, Vox Populi Philadelphia, Bali Spirit Festival, Indonesia, InsideOut Festival, Burkina Faso, and Kelly Strayhorn Theatre, Pittsburgh. She has taught at the University of Milwaukee School of Dance, University of the Arts in Philadelphia, Princeton University, University of Iowa, Ohio State University, and internationally in Morocco, Senegal, Mexico, and Hong Kong. She is an environmental educator at Schuylkill Environmental Center and choreographs new works for the Philadelphia Dance Academy annual performance. She has an MFA in Dance from UCLA and her BA from Bowdoin College. She was an Artist in Residence at Marin Headlands and is a recipient of a NY Live Arts Suitcase Fund, NY Foundation for Contemporary Arts Emergency Grant, and was a US Cultural Envoy in Guinea, Botswana, and South Africa. She co-directs a study abroad program in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso. She grew up in the foothills of occupied Arapaho/Cheyenne/Ute/Fort Collins, Colorado and now lives in occupied Lenapehoking/Philadelphia with her family.