“What’s wonderful about being a ballerina is being able to tell a story without saying a single word.”

From New York Times bestselling and award-winning author and American Ballet Theatre principal dancer Misty Copeland comes Black Ballerinas: My Journey to Our Legacy an illustrated nonfiction collection celebrating dancers of color who have influenced her on and off the stage.

As a young girl living in a motel with her mother and her five siblings, Misty Copeland didn’t have a lot of exposure to ballet or prominent dancers. She was sixteen when she saw a black ballerina on a magazine cover for the first time. The experience emboldened Misty and told her that she wasn’t alone—and her dream wasn’t impossible.

In the years since, Misty has only learned more about the trailblazing women who made her own success possible by pushing back against repression and racism with their talent and tenacity. Misty brings these women’s stories to a new generation of readers and gives them the recognition they deserve.

With an introduction from Misty about the legacy these women have had on dance and on her career itself, this book delves into the lives and careers of women of color who fundamentally changed the landscape of American ballet from the early 20th century to today.

Hardcover ‎, 64 pages
ISBN-10 ‎1534474242
ISBN-13 ‎978-1534474246
Reading age: ‎10 years and up
Lexile measure: ‎1240L
Grade level: ‎5 – 9


About the Author
Misty Copeland made history by becoming the first African American female principal dancer for the American Ballet Theatre. The bestselling author of Life in Motion and the children’s books, Firebird, Bunheads, and Black Ballerinas, she is the recipient of the Leonore Annenberg Fellowship in the Arts and an inductee into the Boys and Girls Club Alumni Hall of Fame. In 2015, Misty was named to Time magazine’s 100 list and was one of Glamour magazine’s “Women of the Year.” She lives in New York City. Visit her online at MistyCopeland.com.

Salena Barnes is a Berlin-based 2-D artist. She creates illustrations, characters, and art assets in the fields of entertainment, lifestyle, and culture.

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