Looking to be inspired? Or to hear the stories of other dancers? Check out these 10 insta-inspiration dancers who have overcome adversity and are leaders in today’s dance world.
Michaela DePrince (@michaeladeprince)
Adopted from Sierra Leone, this 23-year-old has redefined beauty and has accomplished many great things such as publishing a book and creating a documentary. Today, she is a soloist with the Dutch National Ballet. She is also the face of Jockey-you go, girl!
Valory Newton (@valorynewton)
Valory Newton is a physical representation of being a fighter. At the age of 9, she lost her left leg to bone cancer. However, that did not stop her from chasing her passion. This 8th grader is a powerhouse on a mission!
Misty Copeland (@mistyonpinte)
Principal with the American Ballet Theater, Misty Copeland is a must follow for all dancers. She is redefining the definition of a ballerina and creating a space for diversity in the arts. Beginning at a late age, Copeland has gone on to do many infamous roles.
Ava Blaser (@ava_blaser)
Ava is a 2x cancer survivor, but that doesn’t define her. She is a model for Five Dancewear and has also been on the Ellen Show. She has also been photographed by the world-renowned Jordan Matter. We can’t wait to see what else this amazing woman accomplishes!
Yuan Yuan Tan (@tanyuanyuansf)
Regarded as “the greatest Chinese ballerina of all time,” Yuan is from Hong Kong. She currently is a principal with San Francisco Ballet. She began dancing at age 11 and went on to capture many awards and is still chasing her passion.
Lizzy Howell (@lizzy.dances)
Lizzy went viral a few years back when a video of her doing fouettes was posted. Since that time she has been busy! She is an ambassador for Capezio and Target. An inspiration to all and proof that dance is for everyone.
Desmond Richardson (@desmondrich7)
Originally dancing with Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, Desmond Richardson went on to establish Complexions Contemporary Ballet. He has also been nominated for a Tony Award. He is known for welcoming many styles and cultures into the dance world.
Biscuit Ballerina (@biscuitballerina)
Ran by Shelby Williams, a soloist with the Royal Ballet of Flanders, Biscuit Ballerina is an account dedicated to finding the humor in ballet. Shelby’s mission is to remind dancers that ballet and dance, in general, may be an art seeking for perfection, but at the end of the day what fun is dance if you can’t laugh at yourself.
Aesha Ash (@aeshaash)
Aesha was the only black dancer at the New York City Ballet for most of her career and experienced discrimination growing up. Today, she encourages kids to break the stereotypes and chase their passions. You may recognize her from our Facebook page, as we shared Aesha’s project to spread awareness of her amazing work!
Cassa Pancho (@cassapancho)
Cassa Pancho is the founder of Ballet Black. Ballet Black is a company that seeks to make the dance world more diverse and offers a dance experience to the whole community. Her ultimate goal is to see the fundamental number of colored dancers change.