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Michaela DePrince Bio

Teen ballerina Michaela DePrince has overcome remarkable circumstances and danced around danger to become the toast of the dance world. Orphaned by the war in Sierra Leone, the 17-year-old dancer found her feet after being adopted and brought to America, she even appears in the recent ballet documentary First Position. Find out more in her Kidzworld Bio!

Alone in Sierra Leone

Born Mabiny Bangura in Sierra Leone in West Africa, Michaela was orphaned by the age of three years old, her father killed by revolutionaries and her mother starving to death. She was taken by an uncle to live at an orphanage where she was shunned by the other orphans for having a skin condition. Michaela says that in her war-torn homeland she saw frightening things every day, but when she came across a glossy magazine photo of ballerina effortlessly happy and free, she knew what she wanted to be, and kept the picture close to her at all times.  Along with her best friend Mia at the orphanage Michaela was adopted by a couple from New Jersey, who brought them to the States for a new life. Michaela told Teen Vogue.

"I was in such a bad situation, so the fact that this person was so happy and enjoying life—it made me hope that I could be that happy someday. My rebelliousness in Sierra Leone helped me survive there, and it stayed with me until I moved to the States and realized I was in a safe place with caring parents.”
 

Budding Ballerina

When she reached the U.S. Michaela showed her new parents her long-cherished magazine photo after trying to find toe shoes in her mom’s handbag! They decided to enroll her in The Rock School for Dance and later when the family moved and she couldn’t find a good enough school Michaela went to a full-time dance boarding school to pursue her passion.

"I missed my family desperately, but ballet is what I wanted to do" 

First Position

Despite excelling as dancer at such a young age Michaela constantly encountered racism in the dance world, with many people feeling that she didn’t have the body type or look required for a professional ballerina – luckily she was undeterred and eventually found a role model when she saw black dancer Heidi Cruz perform. Michaela’s mother went to the trouble of dying her pointe shoes dark brown so that she didnt’ stand out in the classic peach ballet gear.

Michaela has gone on to wow audiences all over the world with her incredible dance talent, and was featured in the documentary First Position, all about teenage ballerinas training and trying to make it in the dance world – and director Bess Kargman knew she had picked a future star with Michaela!

Check out the trailer for First Position below!

                                                                                     

 

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AlphaT
AlphaT posted in Debating:
"NovaHex" wrote:It's the equivalent of teaching the Bible in a public school. People have different opinions about it, and some don't want their kids to learn about it. There's a huge difference between understanding something, and forcing beliefs. In other words....  Separation of Church and Straight? :p
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NovaHex
NovaHex posted in Debating:
It's the equivalent of teaching the Bible in a public school. People have different opinions about it, and some don't want their kids to learn about it. There's a huge difference between understanding something, and forcing beliefs.
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Puppies077
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AlphaT
AlphaT posted in Debating:
"DisneyanimeLover" wrote: "AlphaT" wrote: "KingShawn13" wrote: "AlphaT" wrote: "frolickingwinsanity" wrote: LGBTQIA+ community is just as appropriate as everyone else. This angers me that they made such a big deal out of it. Like DisneyanimeLover said: "I think it's fine to talk about. It's a part of life, and people should be educated on it."  Sadly, we kids are often told we're not old enough or lack the experience to have opinions on such things. Should these things really be taught or talked about in sixth grade? "AlphaT" wrote: "frolickingwinsanity" wrote: LGBTQIA+ community is just as appropriate as everyone else. This angers me that they made such a big deal out of it. Like DisneyanimeLover said: "I think it's fine to talk about. It's a part of life, and people should be educated on it."  Sadly, we kids are often told we're not old enough or lack the experience to have opinions on such things. Should these things really be taught or talked about in sixth grade? Should the Holocaust? Should Slavery? Should the Civil Rights movement? Because each of those subjects are definitely more inappropriate than the LGBT and what they stand for and yet it continues to be taught by teachers and learned by children in grades as low as fourth grade. Compared to those events in history, the LGBT discussion seems more like The Cat In The Cat than an inappropriate topic. And besides if a student feels they are mature enough to want to boraden their perspective and thoughts then they should be allowed to do it and not be oppressed or told they're wrong because their views differ from the status quo. Should children really be taught sexuality outside of Specs Ed class? Be honest here, none of us would want our kids to go to school and be lectured on the LGBT.  Well, actually that's not entirely true. ^ It depends on the parents. If they are conservatives, then that'll be true. However, they're lots of liberals who wouldn't mind.  My school educates us on LGBTQ+ quite often, and the students don't mind. Most enjoy it. I've only heard one family complain, and they were conservative.  The teachers are people with political and social opinions as well, which makes it hard to teach fairly. What curriculum would there be?
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