Misty Copeland is promoted to principal at American Ballet Theatre

When Misty Copeland was promoted to principal dancer at the American Ballet Theatre, she became the first African American woman ever to hold that position in the company. She was also the first African American woman to star in Swan Lake at the MET with ABT.

Born in Kansas City, Missouri and raised in San Pedro, California, Misty Copeland began her ballet studies at the age of 13 at the San Pedro City Ballet. At the age of 15, she won first place in the Music Center Spotlight Awards. She then began her studies at the Lauridsen Ballet Center. Copeland has studied at the San Francisco Ballet School and American Ballet Theatre’s summer intensive on full scholarships and was declared ABT’s National Coca-Cola Scholar in 2000.

Copeland joined ABT’s Studio Company in September 2000, then joined American Ballet Theatre as a member of the corps de ballet in April 2001. She was appointed a soloist in August 2007 and a principal dancer in August 2015.










Misty Copeland, American Ballet Theatre

Other Happenings in 2015

Ballet/Dance History

Jun 22: Albert Evans, former New York City Ballet dancer, passes away.
Nikisha Fogo is promoted to demi-soloist at the Wiener Staatsballett.

American History 

Mar 9: US President Barack Obama signs an executive order declaring Venezuela a national security threat to the US.
Apr 23: Loretta Lynch is confirmed as the first African American woman as US Attorney General.
Jun 25: Obamacare subsidies in The Affordable Care Act are preserved by US Supreme Court Ruling.
Sept 14: 14-year-old Texan Ahmed Mohamed is arrested at school when homemade clock is assumed to be a bomb.
Dec 7: Time Magazine readers name Bernie Sanders their “person of the year.”

World History

Jan 23: Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud is crowned King of Saudi Arabia.
May 29: Muhammadu Buhari is sworn in as the President of Nigeria.
Sept 9: Queen Elizabeth II becomes Great Britain’s longest-reigning monarch at 63 years and seven months.
Nov 16: French President Francois Hollande declares the country at war with ISIS in an address to parliament.

Arts & Sciences

Jan 7: 41st People’s Choice Awards—Robert Downey Jr. and Jennifer Lawrence win for film, and Patrick Dempsey and Ellen Pompeo win TV.
Jan 11: 72nd Golden Globes—Boyhood, Eddie Redmayne, and Julianne Moore win.
Feb 22: 87th Academy Awards—Birdman wins best Film and Director, Eddie Redmayne and Julianne Moore win best Actor and Actress, respectively.
Apr 13: Avengers: Age of Ultron premieres.
May 5: Scientists announce the discovery of the oldest and most distant galaxy known to man.
Jul 16: Scientists reveal first close-up pictures of Pluto sent by the New Horizons probe.
Sept 8: Comedian Stephen Colbert debuts as the new host of CBS’s The Late Show.
Sept 21 67th Emmy Awards—Game of Thrones, Viola Davis, and John Hamm win.
Sept 28: NASA scientists announce the discovery of flowing water on Mars.

Human & Civil Rights

Jun 26: US Supreme Court rules that same-sex marriage is legal across all US States.
Sept 1: Pope Francis tells priests to pardon women who have had an abortion in a letter released by the Vatican.
Nov 12: Out Magazine names Barack Obama “Ally of the Year;” Obama becomes first sitting US President to pose for the cover of a gay magazine.
Dec 31: US law enforcement kills 1,134 in 2015; young Black men are nine times more likely to be victims.


Jan 31: Australian Open Women’s Tennis—Serena Williams wins 19th career Grand Slam singles title.
Feb 1: Super Bowl XLIX—New England Patriots beat Seattle Seahawks.
May 2: Floyd Mayweather Jr. beats Manny Pacquiao with points in 12 rounds in world welterweight unification fight.
May 4: Golden State Warrior Stephen Curry is named MVP for the 2014-2015 NBA season.
Aug 27: 15th Athletics World Championships—Usain Bolt adds the Men’s 200m dash gold to his 100m win.

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