Dr. Brenda Dixon Gottschild 2022-23 Mellon Fellow


Brenda Dixon-Gottschild is the author of Digging the Africanist Presence in American Performance: Dance and Other Contexts; Waltzing in the Dark: African American Vaudeville and Race Politics in the Swing Era (winner of the 2001 Congress on Research in Dance Award for Outstanding Scholarly Dance Publication); The Black Dancing Body–A Geography from Coon to Cool (winner of the 2004 de la Torre Bueno prize for scholarly excellence in dance publication); and Joan Myers Brown and The Audacious Hope of the Black Ballerina: A Biohistory of American Performance.

Additional honors include the Congress on Research in Dance Award for Outstanding Leadership in Dance Research (2008); a Leeway Foundation Transformation Grant (2009); the International Association for Blacks in Dance Outstanding Scholar Award (2013); the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus Civil Rights Award (2016); a Pew Fellowship in the Arts (2017); and a Dance Magazine Award (2022).

A self-described anti-racist cultural worker utilizing dance as her medium, Dixon-Gottschild is a freelance writer, consultant, performer, and lecturer; a former consultant and writer for Dance Magazine; and Professor Emerita of dance studies, Temple University. As an artist-scholar, she coined the phrase “choreography for the page” to describe her embodied, subjunctive approach to research writing.

Nationwide and abroad, she curates post-performance reflexive dialogues, writes critical performance essays, performs self-created solos, and collaborates with her husband, choreographer/dancer Hellmut Gottschild, in a genre they developed and titled “movement theater discourse.”

During her residency, Dr. Dixon-Gottschild will participate in events about her work and distinguished career and curate events about the erasure of Blackness from dance forms such as ballet and flamenco.