Joy Womack just signed a contract with the Bolshoi Ballet, becoming the first American woman ever to dance for the iconic Russian company. The historic move is especially significant because Joy wasn't always a prodigy destined for ballet greatness. As a teenager at the Kirov Academy of Ballet in Washington, DC, she was actually told she didn't have enough turnout or flexibilty, and was asked to leave the school. (Pick up Pointe's August/September issue, out later this month, for the full story.) But one of the Bolshoi teachers saw potential, and brought her to the Bolshoi school in Moscow.
Ballet's a subjective art form. There will always be people who don't like how you dance. Womack had the chutzpah to ignore them, and through sheer will and incredible determination, she made her most fantastical dreams come true.