B. R. Copeland's Way To Dance

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Born on September 10, 1982 in Kansas City, Missouri, endured an unruly home life to find her way to dance. She eventually studied ballet under California ballet instructor Cindy Bradley, who realized from the start young Misty was a prodigy. She started pointe after very little ballet training. In 2000, Copeland joined the studio company of American Ballet Theatre, becoming a soloist a few years later and starring in multiple productions such as The Nutcracker and Firebird. In late June 2015 Copeland became the first African-American performer to be appointed as an ABT principal dancer in the company's decades long history, giving her the well-deserved fame.

Although rising to the top wasn’t always easy. Copeland’s life at home was difficult and ultimately her parents allowed the 13 year old to move in with her dance
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Copeland’s mother demanded that she return home. With additional coverage from the local media, a battle began between Bradley and her mom. Copeland was 15 years old and was looking into legal freedom from her mom. Eventually the request was ultimately dropped with Copeland getting a police escort and returning to live with her mother.

Yet Copeland refused to let go of her career as she took classes at Lauridsen Ballet Centre, In 1999, she did another summer intensive with the American Ballet Theatre. Copeland joined ABT’s company later in 2000, and became part of its corps de ballet the next year. In 2007, Copeland became an ABT soloist. Her emotional power was shown in productions such as La Bayadère, Firebird, The Nutcracker, Sinatra Suite, and Bach Partita.

Copeland continued to pursue her dance career and perfect her skills, although she had to stop multiple times due to injuries. From Misty Copeland, anyone can learn about determination, overcoming racial boundaries, and following one’s
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