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Sweet Blackberry's mission is to share stories that empower and instill a sense of pride in children. Previous films by Sweet Blackberry have received the prestigious Parent’s Choice Award and Learning Magazine’s Teacher’s Choice Awards, among others. They were narrated by noted actors Alfre Woodard and Queen Latifah. Both films showed on HBO and HBO Family and have been distributed to libraries and schools all over the world and have made a difference!
So much so that a chorus of parents and teachers, around the country, are calling out for us to make more films! For our next story, we will feature the First Black Prima Ballerina Janet Collins!
Janet Collins was a remarkable woman who overcame incredible obstacles to become the first African American soloist to perform at the Metropolitan Opera! When only 15 years old, the talented Janet Collins was asked by the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo to join their company on the condition that she perform in whiteface!
She declined and later became a celebrated Prima Ballerina at a time when this was unheard of. She also won awards for her dancing on Broadway including the 1950 title ofBest Dancer on Broadway.
Janet Collins set the stage for an explosion of African American dancers for years to come, paving the way for companies like Alvin Ailey and the Dance Theater of Harlem.
Janet Collins's story shows children that they can be anything even if you are being told that what you are is not the model for success. She knocked down the barriers! Janet Collins rose to such heights that it is our duty at Sweet Blackberry to share her story with as wide an audience possible!
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