Celebrating Jody Gottfried Arnhold

by | Aug 27, 2023 | Performance Video, Warm Note

The Dance Education Laboratory (DEL) is such an important client of mine.

DEL Founder, Jody Gottfried Arnhold, is a huge inspiration to me, and this summer I was able to help celebrate her with this film!!


In 2011, I got a call from Jody… which is a wonderful call to receive!


She asked me to film a workshop at 92NY for the Dance Education Laboratory, and that experience was when I first understood that there is no dance without dance education.

After filming countless DEL workshops, it’s become central to my mission as a filmmaker to advocate for dance education. It was not until I started working with Jody on our very first film, PS DANCE! Dance Education in New York City Public Schools, that everything started to click for me. As I followed five dance teachers in NYC public schools, I got the inside look in each of these classrooms and it brought me to tears. I witnessed students inspired to learn because of dance.

The PS DANCE! films Jody and I have created have helped educators, parents, and students visualize what is possible in their schools. A dance education should be the standard for all students in NYC and everywhere. Through dance, students are embodying lessons in history, literature, and math… they’re deepening their understanding of required curriculum, and they are definitely having fun doing it!

We got to celebrate our latest film, PS DANCE! THE NEXT GENERATION, with a screening and talk-back at Jacob’s Pillow this past July!


Thank you Jody, so much, for your vision, your passion, your inspiration- your inspiration for all of us is so crucial, and I am forever in gratitude. 💕

Nel Shelby is Owner & Filmmaker for Nel Shelby Productions, her New York City-based company dedicated to dance videography and editing. Nel shares her mission to preserve and promote the art of dance with her husband, Christopher Duggan, a dance and wedding photographer. They collaborate on projects with dance companies of worldwide renown, up-and-coming choreographers, dance educators, dance schools and more. Nel is Video Producer at Jacob’s Pillow and Vail Dance Festival and is also the proud Director and Producer of PS DANCE! — a New York Emmy-nominated documentary about dance education in NYC’s public schools.