In 2007, Misty Copeland made history by becoming the third African American female soloist and first in two decades, at The American Ballet Theatre.
Misty took her first ballet class at 13, an advanced age to begin this traditional art form. She was en pointe within three months. Soon after she starred as Clare in "The Chocolate Nutcracker," the Debbie Allen narrated African American version of The Nutcracker.
At age 15, Misty won first place in the prestigious Los Angeles Spotlight Awards prompting the Los Angeles Times to name her as The Best Young Dancer in the Greater Los Angeles Area. After winning Spotlight, Misty accepted a full scholarship to attend The San Francisco Ballet’s summer intensive program.
Misty was once again offered a full scholarship in 2000 to attend The American Ballet Theatre’s Summer Intensive Program and was also declared ABT’s National Coca Cola Scholar. At the completion of the Summer Intensive, among 150 dancers, Misty was one of six girls chosen to join American Ballet Theatre’s Studio Company.
In 2001 Misty joined ABT’s Corps De Ballet.
In 2002 Misty was selected by ABT’s director, Kevin McKenzie, to compete for The Princess Grace Award and in 2007 to compete for The Erik Bruhn Prize. He promoted Misty that same year to the rank of Soloist with The American Ballet Theatre.
In 2008, Misty was honored with The Leonore Annenberg Fellowship in the Arts. This two year fellowship is awarded to young artists who exhibit extraordinary talent, providing them additional resources in order to attain their full potential.
Misty’s has performed many varied roles with The American Ballet Theatre including: Gulnare "Le Corsaire," Flower Girl "Don Quixote," The Peasant Pas de Deux "Giselle," Princess Florine "The Sleeping Beauty," Pas de Trois & Tchaikovsky Pas de Deux "Swan Lake," Sinatra Suite "Twyla Tharpe" and Misty will premiere the title role of The Firebird in the Spring of 2012, featuring new choreography by world renowned in house ABT choreographer Alexi Ratmanski.
Misty has been featured in numerous publications and television programs including: People Magazine, Time Magazine, O Magazine, Dance Magazine, New York Times, CNN, Headline News, BET, Fox News, the Tavis Smiley Show and Lopez Tonight. As further evidence of her broad appeal, Misty was handpicked by Prince to star in his “Crimson and Clover” video and was special guest artist at his concerts in France and the United States. Passionate about giving back, Misty’s charitable endeavors have included performing for friend, actress and author Victoria Rowell’s "Foster Children's Positive Plan" and Uptown Dance Academy's "Black Nutcracker”. Her endorsements past and present include BlackBerry, Payless, Capezio, Sansha and Boys & Girls Club.
Misty will be honored with induction into the Boys and Girls Club National Hall of Fame in the Spring of 2012.
First African American female Soloist with ABT in over 2 decades, performing with Prince at Madison Square Garden and Dancewear Line “M by Misty”.
FIRST THING THAT COMES TO MIND WHEN YOU SAY “CAPEZIO”
First thing that comes to mind when I think of Capezio - Classic and reliable
FAVORITE CAPEZIO ITEM
Capezio transition tights. I have been wearing these onstage for 11yrs!
BIGGEST PIECE OF ADVICE FOR OTHER DANCERS
Biggest piece of advise for other dancers- work tremendously hard if this is what you really want. Don't be afraid to be you, even if it's different from how people view a dancer. Being you makes you that much more special.
UNUSUAL FACT/LOVE/HABIT/GOAL/ABILITY THAT PEOPLE MIGHT NOT KNOW
Unusual fact- I eat a lot of candy before i go onstage that are kept in the wings for the dancers at ABT. I don’t eat them intentionally to give me a sugar rush but just because they're there. Lol.