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Wednesday, January 3, 2018

BAM's Joseph V. Melillo to receive a Bessies honor

Joseph V. Melillo
(photo: Jesse Winter)

The NY Dance and Performance Awards (The Bessies) has announced the recipient of the 2018 Bessies Presenter Award for Outstanding Curating--Joseph V. Melillo, Executive Producer, since 1999, of Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM). Melillo will receive the award at the Bessies Presenters Gathering on Sunday, January 14 (5-7pm), at La MaMa's Downstairs Theater.

“The Bessie committees wanted to recognize Joe Melillo for his visionary curation for more than three decades,” said Bessies Executive Director Lucy Sexton. “Joe has made sure dance has a place on the stages of BAM—from the grand Howard Gilman Opera House to the adventurous Harvey Theater to the intimate space at the Fisher. He has brought so many international choreographers to New York City and lifted up generations of American dance artists on the world stage. We are thrilled to be honoring him with this award.”

The celebration of Melillo's award is free and open to all in the dance and performance community. Please click here to make your reservation.

La MaMa (Downstairs Theater)
66 East 4th Street (between Bowery and Second Avenue), Manhattan

Established in 2017, the Bessies Presenter Award for Outstanding Curating recognizes a presenter or curator of work performed in the New York City area. It is presented to an individual or curatorial team whose work has had a palpable impact on artists, audiences, or the dance and performance field in general. While the award can recognize sustained achievement in curating or presenting over time, it can equally recognize a particular project, festival, or season that occurred in the past year. Visiting or guest curators, as well as full-time curators and presenters are eligible. The first Presenter Award (in 2017) went to Judy Hussie-Taylor, Executive Director and Chief Curator of Danspace Project. 

The NY Dance and Performance Awards have saluted outstanding and groundbreaking creative work in the dance field in New York City for 33 years. Known as “The Bessies” in honor of revered dance teacher Bessie Schönberg, the awards were established in 1984 by David R. White at Dance Theater Workshop. They recognize outstanding work in choreography, performance, music composition, and visual design. Nominees are chosen by a selection committee comprised of artists, presenters, producers, and writers. All those working in the dance field are invited to join the NY Dance and Performance League, as members participate in annual discussions on the direction of the awards and nominate members to serve on the selection committee. The Bessies are produced in partnership with Dance/NYC. For more information about the Bessies, visit
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