Orion Lecture in Fine Arts

Michèle Moss

Dancer, choreographer, researcher


As well as being co-founder of Calgary’s concert jazz dance company and community school DJD (Decidedly Jazz Danceworks), Michèle Moss is an associate professor with the University of Calgary’s Faculty of Arts/SCPA-Dance. She enjoyed a performing career with the DJD company and created many works for the concert stage (1986-2021), and her dedication to discovering the nature of jazz dance and jazz music has led her to circle the globe. She began her pedagogical and ethnographic research by searching for the roots of jazz dance in Africa in 1987, followed by numerous visits to Guinea, Conakry, Senegal and North American and Caribbean field sites, such as Cuba and Trinidad. Her research mostly takes the form of performance creation projects, often with live music, but also includes textual projects such as addressing the history of jazz dance.