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Melanie George

Melanie George is an educator, dramaturg, choreographer, scholar, and certified movement analyst.

Named one of Dance Magazine’s “30 over 30” in 2021, she is the founder of Jazz Is… Dance Project and Associate Curator and Director of Artist Initiatives at Jacob’s Pillow. As a dramaturg, she has contributed to projects by David Neumann and Marcella Murray (on the Obie Award winning Distances Smaller Than This Are Not Confirmed), Kimberly Bartosik/daela, Raja Feather Kelly, Susan Marshall & Company, Urban Bush Women, Machine Dazzle, and Alice Sheppard/Kinetic Light, among others. Current projects include new works by Helen Simoneau Danse, Ephrat Asherie Dance, and Caleb Teicher & Company.  An in-demand teacher and choreographer of the neo-jazz aesthetic, her jazz choreography is regularly commissioned by colleges throughout the United States. George is a featured contributor and consultant for the documentary UpRooted: The Journey of Jazz Dance, and she founded the global jazz dance advocacy website Publications include chapters in Jazz Dance: A History of the Roots and Branches and the forthcoming Rooted Jazz Dance: Africanist Aesthetics and Equity in the Twenty-First Century (University Press of Florida). George has worked as a consultant in the arts for over a decade, applying her expertise in scholarship and education to assist artists and arts organizations in articulating language and facilitating the development of creative work. In addition to her work with independent choreographers and dance educators, George has provided professional services for The Joyce Theater, The Guggenheim Museum, BAM, Gibney, and Dance/NYC among others. She is the former Dance Program Director at American University, and has guest lectured at Harvard University, The Juilliard School, and The Yale School of Drama. George is the recipient of the 2021 Outstanding Leadership Award from the National Dance Education Organization.

Essays by this Contributor

Jazz Dance, Music, and the Importance of Swing

Uncovering Jazz Elements in the Work of Contemporary Choreographers