three years. She also visited the Congo - the motherland of her ancestors. From 1987 to 1992 she was a member of the only traditional Congolese dance company in New York City, Malaki MA Congo.
Funmilayo was born in Brazil and grew up in Guyana. Funmilayo traveled extensively to Nigeria and Ghana, where she lived and studied dance for
For close to 20 years, Funmilayo has been teaching Congolese Dance in New York City and is the director of FUSHA Dance Company founded in 1995. In 1996 she won the Ethnic Dance Award for the best African dance instructor.
Funmilayo has also studied Ballet, Modern, Tap, Sabar, Guinean, Haitian, Afro-Cuban, Afro-Brazilian, Dahome, and Dunham. She is employed by the Department of Education where she teaches ethnic dance to pre-k through 12th grades in the artist in residence program.
The ancient dance of the Congolese people has been combined with the genius creations of their descendants and have shaped the musical culture of many music and dance styles in the diaspora i.e., Samba, Salsa, Hip Hop, Reggae, Calypso, Cassava, Jazz, Hawaiian, Belly Dance, the Electric Slide, and even Michael Jackson's "Moonwalk". Funmilayo became inspired to form Fusha Dance Company to empower and educate people on the healing powers of dance and to celebrate the richness of dance and culture from Africa and the diaspora.
Congolese dance is a healing dance that Funmilayo refers to as "medicine dance" movements for healing the womb and prostate through music vibrations ad pelvic rotation.