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Moscow

Movement Sciences
College of Education
University of Idaho
Moscow, Idaho 83844-2401
Phone: (208) 885-7921
Fax: (208) 885-5929
Email: movementsciences@uidaho.edu

Melanie Meenan

Melanie Meenan


Office: PEB 202
Phone: (208) 885-2184
Email: mmeenan@uidaho.edu

College of Education
Department Movement Science
Clinical Assistant Professor

Campus Locations: Physical Education Building


  • Research/Focus Areas
    • Pedagogy, Experiential Education, Choreography, Improvisation, Somatic Practices, Dance Kinesiology
  • Biography
    Melanie Meenan (MFA, MA) is an advocate for researching dance through performance, choreography, teaching, and theory. She holds her Master of Fine Arts in Dance from the University of Oregon, where she was a three-time recipient of the Georgianne Teller Singer Dean’s Fellowship in Dance. She also holds a Master of Arts in Dance Performance from Laban in London, a comprehensive Pilates teacher certification from Body Arts and Science International, a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance and a Bachelor of Arts in Journalism from the University of Wyoming. Melanie has danced professionally as a freelance artist in Eugene, as a member of the Hannah Kahn Dance Company in Denver, and with Transitions Dance Company in London. Her choreographic work has been showcased in the University of Oregon School of Music and Dance Emerging Artist Series and at Dance for a Reason in Eugene. Her current research interests are focused on pedagogic, choreographic, and performance approaches that emphasize the inherently somatic nature of dance. She deeply values teaching methods which promote knowledge of the body and whole self. Through mindfulness and experiential formats, Melanie seeks to promote dance training as a healthy endeavor. Melanie is a member the International Association of Dance Medicine and Science.
  • Selected Publications
    • Meenan M.J. & Chatfield SJ. (2013). Dance in the 21st Century: The Neuroscience of Mindfulness and its Presence in Dance. Abstracts of the 23rd Annual Meeting of the International Association for Dance Medicine and Science, 67-68. Presented October 19, 2013.
    • Meenan, M.J. (2013). Exploring the Modern Dance Technique Class as a Somatic Practice. MFA Thesis, University of Oregon. UMI Dissertation Publishing.

    Other Creative|Scholarly Work:

    Chatfield, SJ & Meenan, M.J. (In production). Motor control and neuroscience in dance: Theoretical aspects and practical applications. A podcast for the Rudolf Nureyev Foundation Medical Website, directed by Erin Sanchez, Healthier Dance Programme Manager for Dance UK and web administrator for nureyev-medical.org.


    “that moment when…” A dance work choreographed for eight University of Idaho dancers, premiered November 2013 in the University of Idaho Dance Theatre production in the Hartung Theatre, Moscow, ID. Work has been chosen to be adjudicated at the 2014 Northwest Region ACDF conference.
    “Definition of Place.” An improvised movement score created and performed in collaboration with Belle Baggs in response to Robert S. Neuman’s {definition of place} at Prichard Gallery, Moscow, ID in October 2013.

    “Improvisation in Technique, Technique in Improvisation.” A modern dance based movement research session taught at the 2013 Baja Regional ACDF Conference.

  • Awards and Honors
    • Georgianne Teller Singer Dean’s Fellowship in Dance, recognition for excellence in teaching and gradate studies, University of Oregon, 2010-2013
    • Outstanding Dance Graduate Student Award, School of Music and Dance, University of Oregon, 2013
    • Gradate School Research Award, Dance, University of Oregon, 2013
    • Summer Research Grants, Dance, University of Oregon, 2012 and 2011