Michele Gifford, grew up in Dallas, Texas. She began her training with Ann Etgen and Bill Atkinson at the Dallas Metropolitan Ballet. At the age of sixteen she moved to New York City to attend the School of American Ballet on full scholarship. Two years later, she became a member of the New York City Ballet. In her twelve year career at New York City Ballet, Michele had the opportunity to perform many soloist and principal roles including :Balanchine’s “Apollo”,” Rubies”, “Agon”, “Symphony in Three Movements”, ”A Midsummer Night’s Dream”, “ Stars and Stripes” to name a few. Michele also originated many roles including Jerome Robbins’ “ West Side Story Suite”, Peter Martins’” Echo”, Christopher Wheeldons’” Slavonic Dances”, and David Parsons’ Touch”. In 2000, Michele joined Texas Ballet Theater under Ben Stevenson. While at TBT, she performed several principal roles including Ben Stevenson’s “Copellia”, “Four Last Songs”,” Dracula”, and “Peer Gynt” along with Balanchine’s “Allegro Brilliante” and “The Four Temperaments”. Michele has also made several guest artist appearances including “Tchaikovsky pas de Deux”, “Who Cares”, “Barber Violin Concerto”, ”Carmina Burana”, and most recently with the Bruce Wood Dance Company, Ballet Concerto, and American Repertory Ensemble and continues to perform as a Principal guest artist.
Along with performing she is a Balanchine Repiteur and has the opportunity to stage and coach several ballets including Who Cares?, Walpurgisnaught, Serenade, and Valse Fantasie to name a few.
Michele has been working with Mejia Ballet, performing, teaching, and staging selected ballets since 2012.