Kabby Mitchell III was in his early 20’s when he became the first black company member of PNB, back in 1979; pictures of him from the time show a charismatic young man clearly at ease with being elegantly airborne. He danced with the company until 1984, reaching the rank of soloist. It was the beginning of a rich career that took him around the world, but kept him rooted here in the Pacific Northwest, where he became a beloved choreographer, teacher, mentor and role model.
All who knew Mr. Mitchell talk about the joy and positivity that he brought to every interaction; he was the kind of friend who remembered birthdays, always took pictures, made every event a special occasion.
Kabby Mitchell III passed May 4, 2017 and is survived by his sister Patricia Corbert, her family, and by the many friends and students whose lives he touched. His life will be celebrated in a memorial service at 2 p.m. July 9 at Seattle’s Paramount Theater; it will be a weekend of celebrating his legacy, with the Tacoma Urban Performing Arts Center planned to open July 8. Donations in Mr. Mitchell’s memory, the family suggests, can help continue his planned work at TUPAC (tacomaupac.org).
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