The Stoop: Breaking the line | KALW

The Stoop: Breaking the line

Aug 9, 2018

When a ballet teacher told co-host Leila Day that her back should be straight on the ground, no light shining through, and Leila couldn't make it happen, her dreams to be a ballet dancer disappeared. The world of classical ballet is extremely difficult to break into, and for those who have darker skin, there's a lot that comes with it, especially when you're "the only". This episode looks at breaking the line.

We talk to former ballerina Aesha Ashe, and dance educator and writer Theresa Ruth Howard about ballet, bodies, and skin tone.  Leap in!  

To listen to the original episode and more stories from across the Black diaspora go to, or subscribe wherever you get your podcasts.

Support for The Stoop comes from California Humanities, a nonprofit partner of the NEH. Special thanks to the NPR Storylab.