Melissa West

M.A. '14

Melissa West

Melissa West is a choreographer and curator based in Staten Island, NY. Since 2008, her work has been presented in NYC at venues including Dixon Place, Triskelion Arts, The Living Theater, Atlantic Salt Factory for the LUMEN Festival, Queens Museum, and Bowery Poetry Club. She has held residencies through Staten Island Arts, Greenbelt Conservancy, and the CUNY Dance Initiative. Melissa West is the Director & Senior Curator of the Newhouse Center for Contemporary Art at Snug Harbor, where she oversees exhibitions, residencies, performances, and related programming across the 83-acre cultural campus. With a focus on multi and interdisciplinary projects in site-based contexts, West presents the work of emerging and established artists ranging in media across the visual and performing arts. She is an adjunct faculty member of Wagner College in the dance department where she teaches dance history. She is a 2023 Fellow for Utopian Practice with collaborator, Jahtiek Long, through Culture Push, and a recipient of the Mertz Gilmore Dance Research grant through Staten Island Arts.

Current Occupation: 

Director & Senior Curator, Newhouse Center for Contemporary Art at Snug Harbor



New York University

Master of Arts - Performance Studies

New York, New York


CUNY Hunter College

Bachelor of Arts - Dance and English

New York, New York



• Recipient of the Mertz Gilmore Dance Research Grant through Staten Island Arts - 2023

• Culture Push Fellowship in Utopian Practice - 2023