Did you know: Women's History Month Facts About Misty Copeland

Misty Copeland is the fourth African-American soloist, and the first in two decades for the American Ballet Theatre. —Tribune file photo

• Misty Copeland is a ballet dancer for American Ballet Theatre (ABT), one of the three leading classical ballet companies in the United States.

• She made history in 2007 as the third African American to be promoted to the rank of soloist in two decades.

• She is the fourth African-American soloist, and the first in two decades with ABT.

• On June 30, 2015, Copeland became the first African American woman to be promoted to principal dancer in ABT’s 75-year history

• She starred as Odette in George Balanchine’s Swan Lake. Copeland is considered a prodigy because she rose to stardom despite not starting ballet until the age of 13.

• Copeland is the fourth African-American soloist, and the first in two decades with ABT.

• While most professional ballet dancers get their start before age 5, Copeland didn’t begin lessons (at a Boys and Girls Club) until she was 13.

• Copeland studied dance at the lauded Lauridsen Ballet Center in Torrance, Calif.

• Copeland, once powerfully shy and unable to speak in front of groups, said that ballet gave her the confidence to speak up.

• She is an advocate for diversity in ballet.

• She is an author.

• A documentary on Copeland’s career, “A Ballerina’s Tale,” from director Nelson George debuted at the Tribeca Film Festival.

• She toured as a featured dancer for Prince and appeared on the reality television shows “A Day in the Life” and “So You Think You Can Dance.”

• She has endorsed products and companies such as T-Mobile, Dr Pepper, Seiko and Under Armour.

• In 2015, she was named one of the 100 most influential people in the world by Time magazine, appearing on its cover.

https://www.britannica.com/biography/Misty- Copeland

— Compiled by Chanel Hill

Compiled by Chanel Hill

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