Misty Copeland Explains How—and Why—She Took Her Haters Head-On After They Went Viral

She taught them a lesson.

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="Earlier this month, Misty Copeland danced her butt off as the Swan Queen in the American Ballet Theatre’s production of Swan Lake in Singapore. But after the ballet ended, she was met with tons of online criticism due a spot in her performance where she didn’t execute as many turns as were called for the in the choreography (she performed 12 fouettés instead of what should have been 32). Just as gracefully as she dances, Copeland clapped back at her haters, addressing them head-on via social media. And upon reflection, she’s glad she did: She recently spoke out to Cosmo about why she decided to take the trolls on.” data-reactid=”22″>Earlier this month, Misty Copeland danced her butt off as the Swan Queen in the American Ballet Theatre’s production of Swan Lake in Singapore. But after the ballet ended, she was met with tons of online criticism due a spot in her performance where she didn’t execute as many turns as were called for the in the choreography (she performed 12 fouettés instead of what should have been 32). Just as gracefully as she dances, Copeland clapped back at her haters, addressing them head-on via social media. And upon reflection, she’s glad she did: She recently spoke out to Cosmo about why she decided to take the trolls on.

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content=""I just try not to get caught up in reviews and reading things on the internet because they don't know you, and people don't know your journey, and I think that especially in America, especially in New York, when people come to see ballet, I think everyone kind of feels like they're a critic," Copeland explained to the magazine.” data-reactid=”23″>”I just try not to get caught up in reviews and reading things on the internet because they don’t know you, and people don’t know your journey, and I think that especially in America, especially in New York, when people come to see ballet, I think everyone kind of feels like they’re a critic,” Copeland explained to the magazine.

Apparently, even if they’re not a ballet expert, people love to criticize. But hey, most of the population likely couldn’t complete a successful fouetté turn in stage—forget about 32 in a row.

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="Copeland never denied that she missed some key movements in her performance, but she wants people to realize that imperfection is what makes live theater so great. She even included the link to the video of her performance in the bio of her Instagram account.” data-reactid=”25″>Copeland never denied that she missed some key movements in her performance, but she wants people to realize that imperfection is what makes live theater so great. She even included the link to the video of her performance in the bio of her Instagram account.

Copeland went on to explain that she wanted to call out one of the mean tweets to help teach the internet trolls a lesson.

They’re not just walking in to enjoy the beauty that we’re trying to bring to them but caught up in whether or not you’re going to be perfect, and I think that’s what’s so beautiful about what we do, is that we’re not [perfect]! You’re coming to see live theater, it’s not edited! Anything can happen in those moments. I think that’s what’s so exciting about it as a professional, because you have to figure out how to recover from things that may go wrong in the moment, so with the post I posted on Instagram and Twitter and Facebook, I felt like it was really important for me to be an example of how to respond to the negativity that I know every young person experiences, especially with social media these days.

As an artist, you have to be sensitive and you have to be vulnerable, but at the same time, you can’t let those things affect your performance, so I wanted to show that you can learn from these things, whether they’re negative or positive and I wanted to show there’s a positive way if you want to address these people, your critics, whoever is saying things about you who doesn’t even know you. There’s a way to do it so that it’s not putting someone else down, but just kind of learning from the experience.

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="Copeland has already broken down so many barriers in her career. In 2012 she became American Ballet Theatre's first-ever Black principal dancer, helping to diversify ballet and bring it to a wider audience. Last year she became the face of Estée Lauder’s Modern Muse fragrance. After this example-setting, there’s no doubt she’ll keep amazing us with whatever she does next.” data-reactid=”29″>Copeland has already broken down so many barriers in her career. In 2012 she became American Ballet Theatre’s first-ever Black principal dancer, helping to diversify ballet and bring it to a wider audience. Last year she became the face of Estée Lauder’s Modern Muse fragrance. After this example-setting, there’s no doubt she’ll keep amazing us with whatever she does next.

<p class="canvas-atom canvas-text Mb(1.0em) Mb(0)–sm Mt(0.8em)–sm" type="text" content="Related Stories:
Watch Misty Copeland Apply Makeup Using Beauty Hacks Only a Ballerina Can Do
5 Healthy Things Misty Copeland Does Every Day
Misty Copeland on Designing Her Own Barbie, Breaking Ballet Barriers, and the Secret Generosity of Prince

” data-reactid=”30″>Related Stories:
Watch Misty Copeland Apply Makeup Using Beauty Hacks Only a Ballerina Can Do
5 Healthy Things Misty Copeland Does Every Day
Misty Copeland on Designing Her Own Barbie, Breaking Ballet Barriers, and the Secret Generosity of Prince

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