Debbie Allen was born in Houston, Texas on January 16, 1950. She received a Bachelor of Fine Arts with Honors from Howard University.

Debbie began her show business career on Broadway in the 1970s with her debut in the chorus of "Purlie." She also performed in "A Raisin In the Sun" and "West Side Story" where her performance as Anita earned her a Tony Award nomination and a Drama Desk Award. Allen later returned to Broadway as a star, and garnered her second Tony nomination, with a 1986-87 performance in "Sweet Charity." In 1988, she choreographed "Carrie," a newly composed American musical, with the Royal Shakespeare Company.

Debbie has guest starred in such tv shows as "Good Times," "The Love Boat," "The Cosby Show," "Touched By An Angel" and "The Division." "Fame" gave Debbie international prominence. Although the NBC show was canceled after one season, the program went on to first-run syndication for four more years. Its popularity in the United Kingdom prompted a special cast tour in England and spurred a "Famemania" fan phenomena.

While still a cast member of "Fame" she became the first African American woman hired by a television network as a director in prime time. In 1989, after directing episodes of "Fame," she co-wrote, produced, directed, choreographed and starred in "The Debbie Allen Special" for ABC. She received two Emmy nominations, for direction and choreography of this variety show. She also produced and directed the highly popular tv series "A Different World." In 1989, Allen made her debut as a director of made-for-television movies with a remake of the 1960 film, "Pollyanna." She also directed the sequel "Polly: Comin’ Home" in 1990 as well as "Stompin At The Savoy" and "The Old Settler."” Debbie was producer of the 1997 film "Amistad."

Debbie, who’s the sister of actress Phylicia Rashad, has been married twice: to Win Wilford from 1975 to 1983 and she’s been married to former NBA star Norman Nixon since 1984. They have 2 children.

Debbie's film credits include the following:

Debbie's director credits include the following:

Check out the following sites for additional information about Debbie:

Debbie Allen@Free To Dance
Debbie Allen@Internet Movie Database
Debbie Allen Dance Academy
Debbie Allen@Wikipedia
Debbie Allen@African American Registry
Debbie Allen@Intimate Portrait
Debbie Allen brings fame to academy in Culver City