Dancer and Choreographer
Melinda Matticoli (She/Her/Hers) is a dancer and choreographer from Skillman, New Jersey. Melinda began professionally choreographing at the age of 17, and recently presented work at Dixon Place, Arts on Site, Mark Morris Dance Center, Karl Kemp Performance Space, and Emerging Artists Theater. Melinda has trained with The Verdon Fosse Legacy, Michaela McGowan, and Kevin Jenkins, to name a few, as well as through Broadway Dance Center's Children and Teens Program on the Jamison Novello Scholarship. Melinda values her dancers as people first and strives to build community through her choreography.
As an emerging choreographer, Melinda has developed her own unique and creative style. Her work focuses on storytelling with gestural phrase work, influences of jazz technique, & an emphasis on musicality while understanding different textures and elements in her music to develop a storyline. She also collaborates with her dancers to allow space for them to add their own artistic identity and voice into her choreography.
In addition, Melinda has received awards for Best Dance Choreography through New York International Film Awards and Oniros Film Awards. Melinda is a graduate on Broadway Dance Center's Inaugural Choreography Program, and her work has been showcased through Breaking Boundaries Movement on full scholarship. Melinda teaches classes at various studios throughout the East Coast and drop ins at NYC Studio Series.
Dance is a very unique and powerful artform, and it not only allows dancers to express themselves, but at the same time for people to tell life stories. As a choreographer, I hope to provide a safe environment for dancers of all experiences, backgrounds, and levels to dive into their art and allow space for them to explore while enjoying the process along the way. Allowing dancers to put themselves into my work is something so important to me as an artist.
Improvisation is such a powerful and vulnerable tool, and I use this to not only develop new vocabulary but to allow my dancers and students to find their own voice. In so many classes and styles, not only in dance but throughout life, we as humans are told a certain way that things have to be done, and there is often very little voice for others to incorporate their own experiences or stories. My process shifts to fit every project's needs and time frames, but tends to begin with improvisation and conversations with dancers to invite them to feel seen and in a brave, safe environment, From there, I begin to teach and stage choreography, which tends to follow into conversations on how dancers can create their own storyline and make the choreography feel best in their bodies. Through this, dancers to find their own artistic voice not only allows them to feel more aware with themselves as artists, but allows them to be more explorative and less confined to rules. Collaboration is another tool that I value because it is so important to make sure dancers understand and feel confident in what they are dancing. If something does not work for them, I like to offer ways in a safe environment where we can work together to find a new transition or way that feels better for them.
Through the use of improvisation and through my experiences as a dancer training throughout New York City, I have developed a unique style focusing on gestural phrase work, influences of jazz technique, and a large influence on musically while taking account of simple life-like movements. Throughout this process, I incorporate different textures and elements while allowing space for dancers to work on developing their storyline based on what they feel called to do. While every work that I create is different, unique, and special in their own ways, I value these attributes about my work and hope to make an impact on audience members through various media forms.