Mel Charlot is a Montreal-born dancer and choreographer who left everything behind to pursue her dream in Los Angeles. Her distinguished dance career has included participation and choreography at the Monsters of Hip Hop A-List, The Broadway Dance Center and Motivating Excellence.
This weekend she will be coming to Toronto to judge Hit The Floor, one of the world’s largest multi-style dance competitions. Winners can receive up to $50,000 in cash prizes and prestigious training scholarships at the Broadway Dance Theatre in New York.
We chatted with her this week.
SDTC: What’s at the top of your bucket list?
MC: I would love to go skydiving!!!
What’s your go-to song for getting stuff done?
I have more of a genre than song: 1990s, 2000s hip hop, R&B, gospel or Haitian music.
What advice would you give to your fourteen-year-old self?
I would say trust the process. Believe in yourself more and learn how to properly save your money. Also, please know that you are enough. It will all come together. You can’t please everyone.
Who has made a big impact in your life recently, and how?
My mother! I lost her two and a half years ago to cancer. It was very hard and still is, but she left me with so many valuable lessons that I thank God for every day. I also admire the strength and faith she had during the entire chemo and radiation process. Seriously the strongest woman I know. I look at life completely differently now.
What does your ideal Saturday look like?
A beautiful, sunny and productive day so that on Sunday I can reboot and get ready for my week. Oh! Add laughing in there! Saturdays need to feel relaxed and fun, all while getting things done.
What’s the best part of being your current age?
The wisdom I am able to have when facing a challenge and being able to share that with others who might need it.
What is the one quality you’ll be especially looking for in performers at Hit The Floor?
I would say that I want to “believe you” when you dance. Take it further than just steps and a competitive routine and planned facial expressions! Take us somewhere–as a group and individually.
What/who is currently inspiring you?
- Powerful sermons on “STRIDE vs STRIVE.”
- The entire movement of Black Panther and the impact it has had on children.
- The movement that has been happening among women around the world–speaking up more and taking a stand for what they deserve!
- My loving husband: personal trainer, best friend, motivator.
- My bestie: actress, philanthropist, triple threat.
- My dad: biggest heart I’ve ever seen!
- My older brother: teacher, father, smart, strong and best big brother a girl could ask for!
- The women I grew up dancing with who are incredible, strong women, wives and mothers.
What art work would you love to have in your space/on your walls, and why?
I would LOVE to have a painting (or more) by WAK. His work is so powerful. It’s full of strength, wisdom and knowledge. I can relate to many of his paintings. I would also love more Haitian paintings. They capture the real essence and beauty of our culture.
Fave rainy day comfort food? Or activity?
Chocolate chip cookie dough ice cream from Ben & Jerry’s to be EXACT! And under the covers reading a good book or watching a movie cuddled up next to my hubby.
When you were a kid, what did you want to be when you grew up?
Before dance made a serious impact on my life, I wanted to be a psychologist, because I loved listening and helping others.
What was your favourite game/toy as a child?
My favourite indoor games were the Game Boy, Game Gear and Nintendo. My favourite outdoor games were devil sticks, Skip-It, Moon Ball or dodgeball.
What adult task would you like to get better at?
Filling up my gas tank when I have free time instead of last minute when it’s close to empty and I have to head somewhere.
If you could spend a year studying something, what would it be?