Bad ass Black ballerinas aren’t new. There’s Raven Wilkinson, one of the first Black ballerinas allowed to join a ballet company; Janet Collins, the first to grace the stage with the Metropolitan Opera ballet; and the new kid on the block, Misty Copeland, one of the baddest chicks in the game.
But our favorite bad ass ballerina is none other than Michaela Deprince!
Michaela DePrince was born in war-torn Sierra Leone during the country’s decade-long civil war. Rebels killed her father, and shortly after her mother died of fever and starvation. Michaela had vitiligo, a disease that causes patches of skin to lose its color. In Michaela’s native land vitiligo was considered a curse of the devil. This caused her uncle to abandon her at an orphanage. There she was taunted and abused by the women who cared for the children. They called her the devil’s child.
Check out her book Taking Flight: From War Orphan to Star Ballerina.
Enough of the talking. Check these bad ass ballerinas out: