Melissa Bartrem, a blonde woman in a pink shirt smiling against a blue backdrop

Melissa Bartrem

Department of Curriculum, Teaching & Learning
Contact info


MELISSA BARTREM is a dance artist, educator, and scholar from Toronto, Canada. Melissa’s international credits include stage appearances in Brazil with the Tihany Spectacular, South America’s largest Circus, Showtime! with Casino Figueria Da Foz, Portugal, and on the high seas with Princess Cruises. Her countless appearances in live events include performances as a Toronto Argonauts cheerleader, Brazilian Carnival Samba Dancer, Divas Las Vegas Live at Casino Rama to industrials representing brands and companies such as Red Bull and the Canadian Heart and Stroke Foundation. Melissa continues to appear in principal roles in film, television, and commercials. 


Melissa is a doctoral candidate in Dance Education at Teachers College, Columbia University in New York City. Her research interests include holistic, student-centred learning and other pedagogical practices that promote inclusion in dance spaces. Melissa is currently on faculty at The University of Toronto, Centennial College, and The Royal Academy of Dance where she teaches Dance, Movement Studies, and Teacher Education. Melissa has collaborated and taught for world-wide arts organizations in England, South Africa, and China, in addition to presenting her in-practice research at arts and education conferences, including the World Conference in Dance Research in Athens, Greece, Dance Science and Somatics Educators conference and the Canadian Association of Theatre Research. Melissa holds a B.A. (hons.) in Theatre Arts from The University of Toronto, and an M.A. in Dance Education accredited through the University of Surrey, England. Melissa holds a variety of professional dance teaching certifications and is in-demand as a competitive dance adjudicator and choreographer.  

Academic Positions

  • Lecturer in Drama and Dacne
    University of Toronto/ OISE, Curriculum and Pedagogy, Toronto , Ontario, Canada,
  • Professor of Dance, Interdisciplinary Ensemble and Movement Studies
    Centennial College, Theatre Arts and Performance, Toronto, Ontario, Canada,
  • Educator
    The Royal Academy of Dance, Certificate in Ballet Teaching Studies, Toronto, Ontario, Canada,

Research Interests

Dance Education  

-The impact of Collaborative Learning Communities in Independent sector dance education contexts. 

-Holistic, student-centered learning in dance education. 

-An exploration of Pedagogical Content Knowledge in the independent dance sector. 


Arts Education in Ontario 

-An exploration of the prior performing arts training and experience of successfully admitted college performing arts students in Ontario, Canada. 

Teaching Interests

Teaching Summary 

The University of Toronto, Lecturer, Curriculum and Teaching in Drama and Dance 

Centennial College, Professor, Introduction to Dance, Interdisciplinary Ensemble and Movement Studies 

The Royal Academy of Dance, London, England. 2-year diploma in teaching, Teaching How we Learn: The Stages of Development, Canadian/U.S.A cohorts 

International educator, arts partner, and consultant for organizations in South Africa, England, and China. 

Independent sector dance educator across Canada, England and the United States. 

Inspire 2 Dance, K-12 Artist partner in schools across Ontario, Canada 

J & C Academy, K-12 Artist partner & Director of Dance Education in schools across London, England.