Misty Copeland has danced onto the scene in recent years, famous for her powerful Under Armour ad in 2014 and earning the role of the first African-American principal dancer for the American Ballet Theatre Company in 2015. This spring, Copeland is performing the leading role in “Firebird,” taking the spotlight on stage at the ornate Metropolitan Opera House in New York City. In a whirlwind of success, Copeland also partnered with Barbie, which released a ballerina Barbie doll of Misty Copeland on May 2.
The “Firebird” doll will inspire a new generation of girls who will learn Copeland’s incredible story of hard work and determination. It is not a typical blonde-haired, nameless ballerina. This is based on a true role model, a true story—making her doll much more meaningful.
Copeland has shed light on the dark side of the ballet world and at first was turned away for her body and skin color. She persevered and is an excellent role model for girls to learn how to love themselves and not let others diminish their hopes and dreams.
Barbie came to life in 1959 when the Mattel company released its first doll. Barbie dolls are known for having tall, slender and sexy bodies and normally white skinned with long, blonde hair. Barbie has come a long way, introducing a variety of hair colors, ethnicities and Barbies of various sizes and heights earlier this year.
The Copeland doll itself is exquisite, featuring the likeness of Copeland, dark brown hair swept up in a bun donning a bright, scarlet-red costume with orange accents to represent her character in “Firebird.” The Russian ballet first opened in 1910 and Copeland will continue the tradition of performing in the lead role in the ballet this spring.
Copeland is multi-faceted as she has the grace and beauty of the traditional ballerina image, but she is strong in both her body and mind. Copeland is outspoken and independent as she is open to speaking about how competitive the ballet world is.
In the same way, her pretty Barbie doll is not just a piece of plastic. There is much more under the surface. The new Barbie doll will serve as an inspiration to girls who know they can defy the odds and live out their dreams just as Copeland has and be both beautiful and strong.