Melissa Allen Bowman began her classical ballet training at age six with Lois Ellyn, formerly of New York City Ballet, and at age eleven began training with Stanley Holden and Margaret Graham Hills, both from The Royal Ballet in London. At age fifteen, she joined the corps de ballet of American Ballet Theatre, where she danced for the next seven years. During that time, Bowman began her own ballet company, the Emerson Dance Theatre, which featured up-and-coming ABT dancers. From 1981 to 1988, Bowman also appeared in several of ABT’s Great Performances in America. In 1988, she moved to Europe to join the Bern Ballet in Switzerland and then the Zurich Ballet with Uwe Scholz. In 1990, she followed Scholz to Leipzig, Germany, where she was a Soloist and became his Associate Director.
Bowman returned to the United States in 1999 to join the staff of the Pittsburgh Youth Ballet, where in 2000 she became resident choreographer and Associate Director. In 2004, she established, with her husband Richard, Danse Conservatory and California Danse Theatre Youth Ballet and served as the Artistic Director for five years.
Bowman taught at the ABT Summer Intensive in Detroit starting in 2003 and after 5 years, became the Artistic Director of the ABT Summer Intensives. In 2007 she because an advisor to ABT’s National Training Curriculum committee. Ms. Bowman was previously the Assistant Principal of the Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis School at ABT. She has also been an adjudicator for the National Foundation for the Advancement in the Arts.
She joined Houston Ballet in 2016 and is now the Director of Curriculum for the Houston Ballet Academy.