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Trailblazer: The Story of Ballerina Raven…
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Trailblazer: The Story of Ballerina Raven Wilkinson (udgave 2018)

af Leda Schubert (Forfatter), Theodore Taylor Iii (Illustrator)

MedlemmerAnmeldelserPopularitetGennemsnitlig vurderingSamtaler
1731,031,177 (4.2)Ingen
"This beautiful picture book tells the little-known story of Raven Wilkinson, the first African American woman to dance for a major classical ballet company and an inspiration to Misty Copeland. When she was only five years old, her parents took her to see the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo. Raven perched on her crushed velvet seat, heard the tympani, and cried with delight even before the curtain lifted. From that moment on, her passion for dance only grew deeper inside of her. No black ballerina had ever danced with a major touring troupe before. Raven would be the first. Raven Wilkinson was born on February 2, 1935, in New York City. From the time she was a little girl, all she wanted to do was dance. On Raven's ninth birthday, her uncle gifted her with ballet lessons, and she completely fell in love with dance. While she was a student at Columbia University, Raven auditioned for the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo and was finally accepted on her third try, even after being told she couldn't dance with them because of her skin color. When she started touring with her troupe in the United States in 1955, Raven encountered much racism in the South, but the applause, alongside the opportunity to dance, made all the hardship worth it. Several years later she would dance for royalty with the Dutch National Ballet and regularly performed with the New York City Opera until she was fifty. This beautiful picture book tells the uplifting story of the first African American woman to dance for a major classical ballet company and how she became a huge inspiration for Misty Copeland. Theodore Taylor III's unique, heavy line style of illustration brings a deeper level of fluidity and life to the work, and Misty Copeland's beautifully written foreword will delight ballet and dance fans of all ages"-- "When she was only five years old, her parents took her to see the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo. Raven perched on her crushed velvet seat, heard the tympani, and cried with delight even before the curtain lifted. From that moment on, her passion for dance only grew stronger. No black ballerina had ever danced with a major American touring troupe before. Raven would be the first. All Raven Wilkinson wanted to do was dance. On Raven's ninth birthday, her uncle gifted her with ballet lessons, and she completely fell in love with dance. While she was a student at Columbia University, Raven auditioned for the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo and was finally accepted on her third try, even after being told she couldn't dance with them because of her skin color. She encountered racism in her travels while on tour, but the applause, alongside the opportunity to dance, made all the hardship worth it. She would later dance for royalty with the Dutch National Ballet and regularly performed with the New York City Opera until she was fifty. This beautiful picture book tells the uplifting story of the first African American ballerina to ever dance with a major American touring troupe and how she became a huge inspiration for Misty Copeland. Theodore's unique, heavy line style of illustration brings a deeper level of fluidity and life to the work"--… (mere)
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This is the true story of Raven Wilkinson, who as a young woman became a professional ballerina while dealing with many obstacles. Despite insults hurled against her from racist audience members to full-on KKK threats, she persevered as the first African-American woman in the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo (an American touring ballet troupe) and later became a member of the Dutch National Ballet and the New York City Opera.

This book was bittersweet and had me near tears at one point. Raven Wilkinson seems like a lovely person and it's such an unjust world that she had to face so many tribulations in her chosen career for no reason other than the color of her skin. And that it took still decades later before another hurdle could be passed, when an African-American professional dancer played the lead role in Swan Lake at last, noting that Raven Wilkinson was an inspiration and a mentor in her own career.

This title opens with a foreword by Misty Copeland, that same dancer who drew inspiration from Raven Wilkinson's life and career. Backmatter includes a note from Raven Wilkinson herself, a brief biographical sketch, a glossary of ballet terms, and a bibliography. The illustrations throughout are bold, striking, and eye-catching, with emotions clearly shown. ( )
  sweetiegherkin | Jun 8, 2020 |
Raven Wilkinson was the first African-American ballerina ever to dance with a major American touring troupe, the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo. Later, she danced with the Dutch National Ballet and the New York City Opera.

Foreword by Misty Copeland; letter from Raven to readers at the end. Additional back matter includes "About Raven Wilkinson," ballet terms, and a partial bibliography.

See also: Mae Among the Stars; Firebird; Brave Girl ( )
  JennyArch | Feb 20, 2019 |
Raven Wilkinson was the first African American ballerina to be a part of an American touring troupe in America. The biography starts with a foreword from Misty Copeland, a current well-known African American ballerina who expresses how important Raven Wilkinson is in her life. We then journey through Raven's life, and the obstacles she had to overcome in order to become a ballerina. Raven auditioned three times for the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo, and on the third try she was finally chosen. Shortly before Raven joined the company, Brown v. the Board of Education allowed blacks and whites to attend the same schools. Though many people dreamed for this day to come, there were many people who were not happy. While Raven toured with the company, they had shows in the south where the KKK's presence was strong. While dancing one night on stage, the KKK came onto the stage and tried to taunt Raven, but her fellow dancers formed a circle around her to protect her. It was these obstacles that made being a ballerina hard for a person of color. After a few years, Raven's time ended with the company and she joined a convent to do some soul searching. Soon after this reflection period of her life, Raven was chosen by the Dutch National Ballet where they cared about who she was and not what she was.

This book was a breath of fresh air. Speaking as a former ballerina, it is true that there is a lack of diversity and representation within the ballet community. I had many friends that I danced with, who were black, and I never realized that they didn't have many ballerinas to see themselves in and to look up to. That is why this book is so important to have for young girls alike. This story of Raven Wilkinson's life is inspiring and it is one of perseverance, dignity, hope, and strength. The words flow in such a beautiful way, and the illustrations are absolutely graceful. Raven Wilkinson's story is truly incredible, and at the end of the book she wrote a leader to her "Dear Young Friends" that will make your heart warm for days. I absolutely recommend this book to anyone that wants to feel inspired. ( )
1 stem aquinn | Jan 31, 2018 |
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"This beautiful picture book tells the little-known story of Raven Wilkinson, the first African American woman to dance for a major classical ballet company and an inspiration to Misty Copeland. When she was only five years old, her parents took her to see the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo. Raven perched on her crushed velvet seat, heard the tympani, and cried with delight even before the curtain lifted. From that moment on, her passion for dance only grew deeper inside of her. No black ballerina had ever danced with a major touring troupe before. Raven would be the first. Raven Wilkinson was born on February 2, 1935, in New York City. From the time she was a little girl, all she wanted to do was dance. On Raven's ninth birthday, her uncle gifted her with ballet lessons, and she completely fell in love with dance. While she was a student at Columbia University, Raven auditioned for the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo and was finally accepted on her third try, even after being told she couldn't dance with them because of her skin color. When she started touring with her troupe in the United States in 1955, Raven encountered much racism in the South, but the applause, alongside the opportunity to dance, made all the hardship worth it. Several years later she would dance for royalty with the Dutch National Ballet and regularly performed with the New York City Opera until she was fifty. This beautiful picture book tells the uplifting story of the first African American woman to dance for a major classical ballet company and how she became a huge inspiration for Misty Copeland. Theodore Taylor III's unique, heavy line style of illustration brings a deeper level of fluidity and life to the work, and Misty Copeland's beautifully written foreword will delight ballet and dance fans of all ages"-- "When she was only five years old, her parents took her to see the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo. Raven perched on her crushed velvet seat, heard the tympani, and cried with delight even before the curtain lifted. From that moment on, her passion for dance only grew stronger. No black ballerina had ever danced with a major American touring troupe before. Raven would be the first. All Raven Wilkinson wanted to do was dance. On Raven's ninth birthday, her uncle gifted her with ballet lessons, and she completely fell in love with dance. While she was a student at Columbia University, Raven auditioned for the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo and was finally accepted on her third try, even after being told she couldn't dance with them because of her skin color. She encountered racism in her travels while on tour, but the applause, alongside the opportunity to dance, made all the hardship worth it. She would later dance for royalty with the Dutch National Ballet and regularly performed with the New York City Opera until she was fifty. This beautiful picture book tells the uplifting story of the first African American ballerina to ever dance with a major American touring troupe and how she became a huge inspiration for Misty Copeland. Theodore's unique, heavy line style of illustration brings a deeper level of fluidity and life to the work"--

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