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How did ARTSLAB begin?

Born out of a desire to bridge the gap between arts and business, Mathew Heggem, co-founder of Left Side Labs, and Emileena Pedigo, Executive Director of The Show Goes On Productions, decided to put their business minds together and create a program designed to empower artists with strategies for sustainability.  They started by offering a workshop through the Greenwich Village-Chelsea Chamber of Commerce, as part of Village Arts Alive, and led a classroom of 40 attendees through a workshop titled, “Thrival Not Survival: A Workshop for Startup & Emerging Artists.” The ARTSLAB Incubator program is the next step toward cultivating a business-friendly, sustainable arts culture.

Who are the instructors?


Mathew Heggem

Mathew Heggem is co-founder of Left Side Labs, where he choreographs and performs in collaboration with Emma Batman.  As a dancer, he has worked with Nicholas Leichter Dance, ClancyWorks Dance Company, Clyde Forth Visual Theater, and Jennifer Monson. He was also a soloist for historical reconstructions of Ted Shawn and Doris Humphrey works as part of 'The Art of the Solo.'  For over 10 years, he has presented his own work at arts festivals, cabarets, and theaters throughout the Northeast, including: Cabaret Cataplexy; Queer Art Impact's 'Come As You Are' Festival and Gay Wars; various evenings at Dixon Place and The Tank; the New Dance Alliance's 'Performance Mix Festival', the Gloucester New Arts Festival and the Transmodern Festival, as part of a duet company, Kineasthesia, co-directed with artist Wendell Cooper. He was also an artist in residence for the acclaimed Djerassi Resident Artist Program.  As an arts educator, he has been on faculty at the Goucher Summer Arts Institute and Experimental Movement Concepts, was a resident artist for the Trinity College LaMaMa Summer Arts program, and taught workshops for various colleges, high schools and private performing arts institutions. Mathew holds a BA in Dance from Goucher College and completed a 2 year certification in Awareness Through Movement at The Feldenkrais Institute. Mathew also works as the CEO of an accounting consulting firm, SUM Innovation .


Emileena Pedigo 

Emileena Pedigo was managing producer of the Midtown International Theatre Festival in NYC for seven years before resigning to launch The Show Goes On Productions (TSGO). She developed a structure for the annual festival that grew to over 60 shows in seven venues. She also general managed multiple NYC productions, co-produced two seasons with Oberon Theatre Ensemble on Theatre Row, and co-produced two seasons at the West End Theatre for Six Figures Theatre Company. Emileena's individual work with artists and arts businesses focuses on building sustainable careers using entrepreneurial strategies that put the artists' needs first. TSGO provides artist management as well as produces performance showcases and events that brings progressive commercial art and art topics into the public discourse. Through a partnership with Mathew Heggem and Sum Innovation, Emileena co-founded ARTSLAB, an incubator program for arts businesses that cultivate #ArtsMeetsBiz. She is a graduate of the Commercial Theatre Institute, SUNY/Kaufmann's Fasttrac program for entrepreneurs, and a Purdue University alum. She assisted 5-time Tony Award winning producer Stewart F. Lane on 4 Broadway productions, including the Off-Broadway transfer of The 39 Steps. In addition to managing 8 rehearsal studios and 2 small theatres for 4 years, Emileena assisted in operations for the Palace Theatre on Broadway for 2 years. She also production stage-managed extensively on tour and in NYC, Chicago, and the San Francisco Bay Area.