Assistant Artistic Director

[email protected]

Melaina McConnell

Melaina McConnell is from Cleveland, Ohio and joined NPB in its founding year as Assistant Director. She began her ballet training at the age of four with the School of Cleveland San Jose Ballet, under the direction of Dennis Nahat and Gladisa Guadalupe, performing in Cleveland San Jose Ballet’s performances of Toreador, Coppelia, and The Nutcracker. In addition to her classical ballet training, Melaina also studied modern and contemporary dance under the tutelage of Tom Smith, Sabatino Verlezza and Tom Evert. At the age of sixteen she joined Dancing Wheels, America’s premier physically integrated dance company, as the youngest Trainee in their history. She soon became their Principal Dancer, performing featured roles in company works by world-renown choreographers such as Sabatino Verlezza, May O’Donnell, Hernando Cortez, Michael Medcalf, Rosalind Newman, David Roussseve, and Pilobolous Dance Theater. In addition to dancing in over 120 performances across the country annually, Melaina served as an instructor and the School Administrator for the School of Dancing Wheels, where she conducted weekly dance classes, workshops, master classes, and summer camps nationally for students with and without disabilities. 

She currently teaches dance at Absolute Dance, Rock City Dance, and Beyond Words: Music and Dance Center. Melaina and her husband, Dan, live in Lakewood, Ohio with their dogs, Dexter and Odette.