Melissa Pihos – choreographer, dancer, filmmaker, dance educator
Melissa Pihos graduated from UNC Greensboro with an MFA in Choreography where she created PIHOS A Moving Biography, a documentary dance/film performance that focuses on her father’s fight with Alzheimer’s disease and various aspects of his life and Dear Dad, an award-winning short documentary about how her relationship with her Dad has changed because of Alzheimer’s disease.
She was born in Ft. Wayne, Indiana but grew up in Winston-Salem, NC. She has been dancing, performing and choreographing professionally for over 25 years.
She was a competitive gymnast until the age of 14. She currently dances for The Van Dyke Dance Group and John Gamble Dance Theatre. She has danced for Sidelong Dance Company and various other choreographers including Duane Cyrus, Tricia Zweier, Kelly Ozust, Ann Dils, Ali Duffy, Robin Gee, Barry Stoneking and Rebekah Kennedy.
Her choreography is described as being complicated, gripping, evocative, moving and captivating. She often uses multimedia technology in her work which adds a layer to the viewer’s visual experience. Along with being a choreographer and dancer, she is an award-winning filmmaker. She created “Dear Dad,”in a documentary film production class in spring, 2009, which has since been screened all over the United States. In spring 2010, she created a dance documentary called Accessing the Legacy of Martha Graham: Steps in the Street. In 2011 she created Her Wrath, a dance for camera.
She has taught in the UNCG Dance Department, UNC-Charlotte, Salem College, CPCC and at High Point University. She accepted a full time dance position at Valdosta State University in Valdosta, GA. She begins fall 2015. She is a national judge for Showstopper and Dance Machine. She does video and consulting work for Curtain Call Costumes.
She is available for teaching Master classes, Choreographing and she is interested in setting PIHOS A Moving Biography on dance companies and students at Universities and Colleges around the United States.
PIHOS A Moving Biography Tour is a sponsored project of Artspire, a Program of NYFA, a 501(c)(3), tax exempt organization. Contributions on behalf of PIHOS: A Moving Biography Tour must be made payable to Artspire, a Program of NYFA, and are tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law. Donations can be made online at http://artspire.org/DirectoryDetail/tabid/95/id/1183/Default.aspx 3
The Alzheimer’s Association is extremely helpful for people with Alzheimer’s disease,their families and caregivers. If you need more information about the Alzheimer Association — http://www.alz.org/ or call 800-272-3900