Jennifer Meckley (she/they) is a dancer, choreographer, and teacher interested in pushing the physical boundaries of current contemporary modern dance and is strongly inspired by hip-hop dance forms. Meckley is fighting to spread knowledge of the hip-hop culture in academia and concert dance in hopes to bring awareness to cultural appropriation and expose the benefits of training in various African American vernacular dance techniques by utilizing these forms as foundational techniques.
Graduating from Slippery Rock University with her B.A in dance and from the Ohio State University with her M.F.A in dance, Meckley has taught dance courses at West Chester University, Northampton Community College, Cuyahoga Community College, The University of Dayton, and is currently an Assistant Professor of Dance at Ball State University. She has also taught master classes at festivals including The American College Dance Association, The American Dance Festival, MamLuft Co. Dance, Slippery Rock University, and West Virginia Dance Festival.
Meckley is a founding member of the professional modern dance company, Abby Z and the New Utility. They have presented works choreographed by Abigail Zbikowski at various venues and festivals including Jacob's Pillow, Abron's Arts Center, 92nd St. Y, Movement Research at Judson Church, The American Dance Festival, Bates Dance Festival, Inhale Performance Arts Series in Philadelphia, newMoves Contemporary Dance Festival in Pittsburgh, and many more. The company has been selected for several future performances such as a residency at New York City Live Arts, the Wexner Center of the Arts in Columbus OH, and Dance Umbrella in London UK. Check out the New Utility website and facebook page for more information and future performances: abbyznewutility.org
Meckley's choreography has been presented at Ball State University, West Chester University, the American College Dance Association Conference, and Slippery Rock University. By fusing her hip-hop and contemporary modern dance training, she is continuing to develop her artistic perspective through the lens of street dance & club dance forms including breaking, house, waacking, and vogue, and exploring the juxtaposition and coexistence of their unique movement qualities as well as challenging their gender associations. She is also interested in the intersection between dance and other elements of the hip-hop, street, and club cultures such as DJing, MCing, rap, and graffiti in live performance to create an authentic environment and experience in a formal context. She hopes to continue to spread the knowledge of these cultures and the importance of African derived dance forms in current contemporary dance training through teaching and choreography. For residency inquiries please contact Jennifer at email@example.com