Just when we thought Misty Copeland’s stardom couldn’t grow more, she’s surprised us once again. Now, she’s not only your favorite dancing trailblazer, she’s one of TIME Magazine’s 100 Most Influential People. She’s even landed one of five cover spots, along with Kanye West, Ruth Bader Ginsberg, Bradley Cooper and Jorge Ramos.


Gymnast and five-time Olympic gold medalist Nadia Comaneci writes on Misty: “success is not about how you grow up or the color of your skin.” TIME seems to include Misty as a “Pioneer” (rather than an “Artist”) because she so tenaciously demonstrates this principle - she is an inspiration and an icon as well as an artist.


Misty’s had a big week - she appeared as Odette/Odile in The Washington Ballet’s Swan Lake alongside Brooklyn Mack as Sigfried, marking the first time in US history that two African-American dancers performed as this leading pair since 1980. Influential, indeed.
 

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