Ballet dancer Michaela DePrince

Ballet dancer Michaela DePrince – how a magazine cover changed her life

In the category women we admire, ballet dancer Michaela DePrince is part of our top 3. Her incredible story is a must-read. Michaela’s faith in herself and her belief that “everything is possible with hard work, perseverance, hope and daring to dream” is contagious. Read everything about this talented ballet dancer below – including how a magazine cover has changed her life.

Cover photo: © Michaela DePrince on Instagram

Ballet dancer Michaela DePrince

Imagine you were born in Sierra Leone, a country torn apart by civil war. Your dad gets murdered when you’re only three years old and your mom dies from fever and starvation. Your aunt abandons you because you have vitiligo – a disease that causes your skin to loose color at certain spots. You’re a devil’s child according to many and you get abused on the orphanage you’re in. However, one day, you get your hands on a magazine. A ballerina is featured on its cover. This moment is about to change your life.

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The youth of ballet dancer Michaela DePrince

After staring at the cover, Michaela DePrince asked one of her orphanage women who the person on the cover is. She didn’t get a clear answer, however. Happily little Michaela got adopted soon after and keeps on dreaming about this mesmerizing ballerina. The loving American couple adopted Michaela at age 5 and soon discovered her talent or ballet. They made the best decision they could’ve made: putting little Michaela on ballet classes.

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From being an outlaw to dancing with Beyoncé

Since her first ballet class, Michaela DePrince soon became a true ballet dancer. Lately she has written a book, tours around the world with the Dutch National Ballet and is their first soloist of African descent. Have we mentioned that this talent is just 22 years old? Michaela seems unstoppable – and she is. Together with Serena Williams and Winnie Harlow she even featured in Beyoncé’s Lemonade video, where she performed a ballet solo. This enabled her to reach a younger crowd and gave her the chance to portray ballet in a new way.

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Being judged on performance rather than appearance

Michaela finally experiences that she isn’t judged on having the tallest legs, being the skinniest or on having a light skin anymore. Today she’s judged on her performance – on what she does best: moving people with the way she dances. That is the best thing that could’ve happened to her; after all she’s been through.

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We can learn from Michaela’s positivity. She is the living evidence that you can reach anything as long as you work hard, believe in yourself and keep on dreaming. Simply never give up and believe in yourself – words to live by.


Quite impressive, don’t you think? Just like ballet dancer Michaela DePrince there are many other inspiring women. Read more about impressive models that form an example for others in our articles about philanthropist fashion models and fashion models that are true role models or go check out our sections on fashion and women in general. We bet you’ll like it.