“A BALLERINA’S TALE” was brought to the attention of Dance Mogul Magazine and we immediately knew that our readers had to know about this film and its purpose. The film is a feature documentary on African-American ballet dancer Misty Copeland. Dance Mogul Magazine had the opportunity to catch up with the film’s director and producer “Nelson George” for a quick Q&A about the inspiration behind the film. We encourage everyone to lend their support in helping properly document history and be a part of it.
Dance Mogul: What inspired you to document dance and why the style of ballet/pointe?
Nelson George: I had very little interest in ballet and had never attended one until I met Misty at a dinner party in spring 2012. I knew she had danced with Prince and had seen some press about her. I sat next to her and was impressed with her poise and her passion for ballet. She was preparing to do the Firebird at the Met and through her manager Gilda Squire, I was able to buy a ticket. It was a great experience. I was really knocked out by the sets, music and the power of the dancers. Misty really stood out. Afterward, I went to a reception for the company and there Misty told me she was in great pain and that her ankle was fractured. That she danced through that pain impressed me so I knew there was a movie story worth telling.
Dance Mogul: Do you feel that there need to be more films geared towards visual arts like dancing?
Nelson George: I love dance films. I thought Win Wenders’ Pina was amazing and I saw it a few times in the theater. Dance is a dynamic art form that is perfect for film when filmmakers are allowed to shoot it well. Carlos Sura’s films Flamingo and Tango are also favorites of mine.
Dance Mogul: How can dancers and non-dancers help support your vision beyond the Kickstarter?
Nelson George: We are going to do a mini-history of Black women ballerinas in the doc so anyone with stories, pictures, and clippings that can help tell that story is welcome to reach out to me.
Dance Mogul: Is there anyone you would like to thank for helping you thus far on this project?
Nelson George: Misty, she has been so gracious in letting myself and my team into her life, particularly during her recovery period. It will be a real insight into her life and the challenges she faces on stage and off.