Interview with Madelon Curtis
Today our guest is actress, singer, dancer, choreographer Madelon Curtis. Madelon's extensive background in professional dance, theatre, and motion pictures, coupled with her vast storehouse of general information gleaned from her world travels, synergize into a rare and intensely focused perspective reflected in her uncommonly imaginative work. We have conducted an interview with her.
From performing arts to design and marketing, what do you think are your greatest strengths/talents?
I feel that my organizational skills along with my communications skills, confidence, sense of professionalism and intense discipline serve me in all capacities and areas of life. I predominantly use these skills both as an actor and as a teacher. Actors, as storytellers, are instruments of communication. Earning a living as an actor is difficult because of the competition and limited number of roles. I feel I possess resiliency which helps with well-being in the competitive world of acting.
With a diverse educational background, what kind of jobs did you enjoy the most and what do you want to achieve in the next five years?
I studied at the Sorbonne in Paris and have a B.A. in French from Vassar College, an M.A. in French and Education from Tufts University, an M.B.A. in Marketing and Advertising from Columbia University, a Master of Landscape Architecture from the Rhode Island School of Design, and an A.S. degree in Veterinary Technology from Foothill College. I love learning!
Diverse and multi-talented, I seem to glide seamlessly between the high-powered corporate environment, the entertainment world of Hollywood, and the magic of Broadway. From my years in NYC and LA, I feel I have acquired a broad range of experience in film, television, theatre, and dance. I am a fully-certified Pilates instructor and competitive ballroom dancer. In addition to my career in the performing arts, I have worked as an account executive for Young & Rubicam advertising agency in NYC, Olympic Airways, and the Pressley Associates landscape architecture firm in Massachusetts.
Although I have experienced many areas through my employment over the years, currently I am committed to,and focused solely on, acting and hope to book more good roles as often as possible.
What was the edge that your fluency in French and Greek gave you?
Since I am 100% Greek-American and speak fluent Greek, the supporting role of the Madame in CAGED NO MORE was tailor-made for me! I spoke Greek in several scenes of the film (which were subtitled) and I also got to use a true Greek accent when I spoke many lines in English. I have spent a lot of time in France, both during my studies at the Sorbonne and during my dance training in Cannes with Rosella Hightower of the Ballet Russes. France is one of my favorite countries and I majored in French in college and completed a Masters in French Literature as well. In addition, ballet terminology is all in French, so I have the ability and advantage of teaching my students the correct spelling, pronunciation and definition of the steps they are doing in this classical art form.
Which kind of dance and choreography work that you have done gives you the most satisfaction?
I started out training as a classical ballet dancer. My ballet training is Balanchine based, having studied extensively with Melissa Hayden, Allegra Kent, Jacques D'Amboise, Pat Wilde, Wilhelm Burmann, and other notable New York City Ballet members and teachers in NYC and Saratoga Springs. I also trained with David Howard, The Joffrey Ballet School, American Ballet Theatre School, Boston Ballet and with Rosella Hightower in Cannes, France. I performed with numerous regional ballet companies in New England, New York and New Jersey.
I was responsible for developing and operating numerous dance programs in the Northeast. I owned and operated my own ballet, jazz and hip-hop dance studio in Massachusetts for many years. My performing ensemble, The Madelon Curtis Dancers, were featured in both concert and commercial work and were renowned for their versatility which spanned classical ballet to cutting-edge jazz and hip-hop.
I also trained and performed extensively with all the well-known notable teachers in jazz and hip-hop. My jazz dance background includes the Boston Gold Dance Company, Broadway Dance Center, Steps on Broadway, Tremaine, Millenium, and Edge Performing Arts Center in Los Angeles. My first love has always been ballet and I continue to teach it along with Pilates. I was also a New England Patriots cheerleader, which was alot of fun to do!
How do you synergize your intensely focused perspective with your imaginative work to create great art?
I feel that I synergize my talents into a rare and intensely focused perspective reflected in uncommonly imaginative work with the highest standard of quality. My unique, enthusiastic, philosophical and successful approach to teaching the art of dance is for all ages. I teach both the absolute beginner as well as the professional. I've taught all forms of dance at the high school, college and professional levels to dancers of all ages and experience.
My choreography is reputed to be exciting and energetic. I feel that I am patient and encouraging and my innovative teaching style incorporates my Pilates experience to avoid injury. I focus on an extensive breakdown of body movements combined with creative and challenging combinations and choreography. I help my students excel to the best of their abilities and potential, regardless of skill level. I care about my students and am dependable, responsible and extremely energetic.
My fluency in French and Greek, and extensive background in professional dance, theatre, and film, coupled with a vast storehouse of general information gleaned from my world travels lets me maturely and enthusiastically share my vision with others, both verbally and through a plethora of alternative media.
What is your latest movie and what role did you play?
My latest film is called CAGED NO MORE. The movie isn’t based on a true story per se, but it is a very real story for millions of sex trafficked victims. It was written by Molly Venzke, a writer from Seattle, and is the first of a trilogy. She wrote it to raise awareness about human trafficking. It is an extremely well-written novel. The story gives a very realistic picture of the horrors of young boys and girls being exploited all over the world. It is a gripping tale. I loved working on the film. I play the evil Greek “Madame” who runs the brothel where the girls are. The entire cast and crew was a joy to work with. We filmed in Louisiana and Greece.
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