The film delves into the behind-the-scenes story of the ballerina who danced her way into the heart of America. Here are four reasons you NEED to see this film:
1. Misty Copeland is an inspiration
In the world of ballet, dancers usually start training for their chosen profession while still in elementary school. Misty Copeland began at age 13. In a matter of five years, Misty was dancing professionally in New York City. On paper, Misty should not be where she is today. But her story is a testment to hard work, talent and belief in the power of dreams.
2. Misty Copeland is a REAL girl
Despite her super human ability to stand on her toes for minutes on end, Misty is pretty much just like you. A Ballerina’s Tale successfully captures Misty’s “every girl” essence. While recounting her early days in NYC, we learn that Misty loves hanging with her best friend at Red Lobster. Who doesn’t LOVE cheddar biscuits?
3. Misty Copeland is history in motion
In A Ballerina’s Tale, the first words we hear from Misty are “I think people think that sometimes I focus too much on the fact that I am a Black dancer. But that’s so much of who I am and I think it’s so much a part of my story.” While Misty is the first black ballerina to reach the professional heights that she has, the black ballerina is not a new phenomenon. Misty stands on the shoulders of ballerinas such as Janet Collins and Raven Wilkinson (and others whose names appear during the credits at the end of the film). In one particularly memorable moment, Misty and the legendary Ms. Wilkinson spend an afternoon together during which Ms. WIlkinson examines Misty’s leg post surgery. The two also share a reenactment from Swan Lake. The moment is sweet and signifigant. It symbolizes the passsing of the baton from one swan to another.
4. A Ballerina’s Tale is a Portrait of an Artist
A Ballerina’s Tale gives a clear and concise portrait of Misty Copeland, the ballerina. George follows Misty during the formative years of her career: Her feature as “Firebird,” her injury, surgery, and rehabilitation, and her triumphant return to the stage. He follows her right up to her historic appointment as principal ballerina at the American Ballet Theatre. We see her hard work, we witness her dance through the pain and triumph through recovery. We don’t see Misty’s tumultuous teen years and battle for emancipation. We don’t need to. Nelson’s decision to focus on Misty’s artistic journey is deliberate and purposeful.
A Ballerina’s Tale is a testament to the fact that dreams really do come true. The film is currently screening in select theaters and is also available on demand and Amazon.com.
Check out the trailer here: