Misty Copeland: Representing Black Ballet Dancers at American Ballet Theatre


Misty Copeland: An Unlikely Ballerina [Source: Dance Channel TV]

Misty Copeland is a diehard American Ballet Theatre soloist who, despite some concerns about race-related barriers, is happy working her way up the company ladder.

She was recently profiled by Charmaine Patrica Warren:

“Misty Copeland, the first African-American soloist in the American Ballet Theatre is…’proud to represent Black ballet dancers; it motivates me, it pushes me to give more to young dancers who look up to me…'”

“In fact, Copeland mentors a group of young dancers with whom she meets as regularly as possible to proffer advice, give private lessons or to motivate them to stay in ballet. She explains, oftentimes ‘teachers tell them to do contemporary work,’ circuitously directing them away from ballet because they are led to understand that ‘ballet exists only in a white world,’ and they would not fit in. ‘I welcome them into the world of ballet.'”

The above video is a separate but timely project on Misty Copeland.