Karen Wright

Southern Ballet
Dance Theatre of Harlem: Principal

The Atlanta Voice, 1972.
Atlanta-native Karen Wright was born to Thomas and Ann Wright Wright and started her dance training at the Harlem School of the Arts at age ten. Wright grew up dancing in the Southern Ballet junior, intermediate, and senior companies and at Spelman College with Shirley Russian while attending Northside High School. She also choreographed and taught at the Sims School of Ballet. From an early age, her talents were recognized; The Atlanta Voice called her “a pretty and talented black girl….showing great promise toward future ‘ballet stardom.’” Representing Atlanta, Wright competed in the Miss Black Teenage America pageant, of which she was the second runner-up.
Wright attended a summer intensive at North Carolina School of the Arts and trained at the Dance Theatre of Harlem school before becoming an apprentice with the company, ca. 1973. She toured with DTH through the US, Mexico, and Europe.
In 1975, Wright returned to Southern Ballet as a guest artist, performing with Mel Tomlinson for their 29th annual season.

The Atlanta Constitution said of Wright, “In a few years she may equal Sara Yarborough of the Ailey Company. And that’s quite a compliment.”













Photo via The Atlanta Constitution, 1975.
Karen Wright with Mel Tomlinson. Photo via The Atlanta Voice, 1975.

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