Intimate Conversations: Melanie George

Updated: Mar 6

Intimate Conversations with Dani Tirrell & guest Melanie George

Saturday, October 10, 2020

"Black love looks like family, in all its many guises. Ancestoral, by blood, found family. It looks like embodied culture…. and discovered culture. Sometimes we find and find out about lineage later than expected or desired. It doesn’t make it any less real or desired. Black love FEELS like comfort. It’s in our food, our style, our language. It looks like self love, self acceptance, self possession. It looks like bonds not bondage."


MelanieGeorge is an educator, dramaturg, choreographer, and scholar. She is the founder of Jazz Is… Dance Project and an Associate Curator and Scholar-in-Residence at Jacob’s Pillow. As a dramaturg, she has contributed to projects by Urban Bush Women, Raja Feather Kelly, Susan Marshall & Company, and Ephrat Asherie Dance, among others. A highly sought after teacher and choreographer of the neo-jazz aesthetic, Melanie is a featured contributor and consultant for the documentary UpRooted: The Journey of Jazz Dance. Publications include “Jazz Dance, Pop Culture, and the Music Video Era” in Jazz Dance: A History of the Roots and Branches (University Press of Florida) and “Imbed/In Bed: Two Perspectives on Dance and Collaboration” for Working Together in Qualitative Research (Sense Publishers). Melanie also works as an arts consultant, 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, Melanie has provided professional services to The Joyce Theatre, The Guggenheim Museum, and BAM, among others. She is the former director of the dance program at American University, and has held teaching positions at Kent State University and Wilson College. Currently, she is a Visiting Professor at Cornish College of Arts in Seattle, Washington.


Photo by JD Urban.