African-American Ballerinas

There are African-American Ballerinas you know?  The most famous right now is Misty Copeland.  There are others, but not a lot of others.  Misty Copeland is the third African-American soloist at the American Ballet Theatre and she is trying to expand ballet to more students of color through her Project Plié program.  Last week I was talking to my dance teacher, Ms. Erica, about whether or not it would even be possible for me to be a classical ballet dancer someday.  She said that it would, even though there are still a lot of people who don’t think that African-Americans make very good ballerinas.  Even Misty Copeland, as small as she is, was told when she was starting out that she had the wrong body type for a ballerina, that she was too muscular.   I am tall and muscular and built “solid,” like my dad says.  I hope that I will get so much better as a dancer and if I choose to pursue classical ballet as a career that somebody will see the artistry in my dance and in my body and give me a chance to dance for a ballet company, not because I’m black, but regardless of the fact that I am black.

Look at these articles, which will tell you more about the subject.
NY Times: Where Are All the Black Swans?
Huffington Post: Misty Copeland, Ashley Murphy & Ebony Williams Cover ‘Pointe,’ Proving Black Ballerinas Rock

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