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Misty Copeland Biography

Birth Name:
Misty Danielle Copeland
Birth Place:
Kansas City, Missouri, United States

Fast Facts

  • Began studying ballet at the age of 13 at the Boys & Girls Club
  • Awarded full scholarships to study ballet at both San Francisco Ballet School and American Ballet Theatre's Summer Intensive program
  • Joined American Ballet Theatre's studio company in 2000 and was promoted to soloist seven years later
  • Collaborated with Prince and danced with him on his Welcome 2 America tour
  • Inducted into the Boys & Girls Club Hall of Fame in 2012 and named their National Youth of the Year Ambassador in 2013
  • Became the first black woman to play Odette/Odile in an American Ballet Theatre production of Swan Lake in 2014
  • Appointed by Barack Obama to the President's Council on Fitness, Sports & Nutrition
  • Starred in an Under Armour commercial titled "I Will What I Want" that went viral with more than 10 million views
  • Published her New York Times bestselling memoir, Life in Motion: An Unlikely Ballerina, in 2014
  • Made history as the first black woman to become a principal dancer with American Ballet Theatre in 2015
  • Named in Time magazine's 2015 list of the 100 Most Influential People and appeared on the cover of the issue
  • In 2015, made her Broadway debut as Ivy Smith in Leonard Bernstein's On the Town at the Lyric Theater
  • Had a Barbie doll created in her likeness for the brand's Sheroes collection in 2016


  • Christopher Copeland -- Brother
  • Douglas Copeland Jr. -- Brother
  • Douglas Copeland -- Father
  • Cameron DelaCerna -- Half Brother
  • Lindsey -- Half Sister
  • Olu Evans -- Husband
  • Sylvia DelaCerna -- Mother
  • Erica -- Sister