Hi, I’m Misty Danielle Copeland and yes have had a tough life but, its helped shape me into the amazing person and dancer I am today. Now lets take it way back to when I was born. I was Born on September 10, 1982 in Kansas City, Missouri I was born with 4 older siblings , and our dad leaving me and our family before I got a chance to meet him which made it way harder for my mom Sylvia Delacerna. Now when I’m 7 my mom moved us away from her 2nd husband later she told us he was an alcoholic and not safe to be around.
So we moved to san Pedro, Los Angeles with my new step dad Robert, mom and him had a new baby, my new baby brother Christopher but Robert was mean and strict, and everyone knew I was his favorite because of my skin tone. But Robert was mean to the rest of my family when my brothers argued he made them go boxing in the yard or if they didn’t behave he would hit them with a frying pan, it was so bad we all got scared of him we all tried to avoid him as much as possible but no matter how hard we tried he would still find us and get mad.
You could see the marks he left on our skin. Soo one day when he went to work all 6 of us hoped in a car with our moms new boyfriend· ray! He dropped us off at moms friends house they were nice but there neighborhood was super scary and it didn’t feel safe, at night we would here gunshots and screaming, and a few weeks latter we were moving again.
After that mom wasn’t making a lot of money and all we could afford was a small motel room for all 7 of us, me, my 5 siblings, mom and her new boyfriend named Alex, after that our youngest brother Camron left us to go and live with Robert because mom was sent to court with Robert. All we could really afford to eat were snacks out of a vending machine. And worse of all I was starting middle school. When I am 13 years old I met a new teacher at my boys and girls club, her name was Cynthia Bradly and she was in charge of Dana Middle School drill team and she saw my dance talent and introduced me to ballet at Lauridsen Ballet Center where I went up on pointe in only 3 months and was preforming on pointe in a year. But my mom couldn’t afford for me to dance so she said I had to quit., , once Bradly found out that I had to quit dancing she offered for me to come and live with her and her family and she would pay for my lessons and of course I said yes. now while living with Cynthia I was 15 and won ballet category of the Los Angeles Music Center Spotlight Awards. After the Las Angeles Music Centre Awards, I was offered multiple scholarships and decided to go with the San Francisco Ballet School workshop for 6 weeks.
When I got home from my scholarship my mom had filed a case against Cynthia Bradly, and my mom won so now I couldn’t go to Cynthia’s house or my old studio, but my mom allowed me to dance but at another studio, South Bay Ballet Company. In 2000 I turned 18 and started dancing at ABT American Ballet Theater in new York, then I was moved up into the corps de ballet in 2001, Now in 2004 when I’m 22 for the first time I got to meet my real dad the one who left me when I was 2 , later that year and I met Olu Evans and we started dating. in 2007, I became a soloist, me and so many other people I know were super proud but it wasn’t easy being a ballerina with my skin tone I faced racism after making it to the prestigious ranks of the ABT, constantly being told I didn’t have the body or talent for ballet or that black ballerinas don’t look right in tutus. But I still had to work hard my dreams of becoming the first African American principle dancer were so close, but still yet so far away. On October 10 in 2012, I had surgery for 6 stress fractured in her tibia, which stopped me from dancing for 7 hole months but didn’t stop my dreams. On June 30 2015 I became the first African American woman to be promoted to principal dancer in ABT’s 75-year history, I did it I had reached my dreams but did I stop there no way.
Currently, I continue to pursue my dance career and perform with the American Ballet Theater. I am also sponsored by Under Armor. And I starred as the women’s advertisement model. and I Danced with Prince on his Welcome 2 America Tour and was Appointed to the President’s Council on Fitness, Sports & Nutrition by President Obama. And only last year me and Olu evens got marred after dating for 11 years.
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