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In-Person Event with Misty Copeland/The Wind at My Back

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In-Person Event with Misty Copeland/The Wind at My Back

Join Anderson’s Bookshop for an in-person signing with Misty Copeland, New York Times bestselling author and principal dancer at American Ballet Theatre to celebrate the publication of her new memoir The Wind at My Back: Resilience, Grace, and Other Gifts from My Mentor, Raven Wilkinson at Pfieffer Hall on the campus of North Central College (310 E Benton Ave, Naperville, IL). This will be a fireside chat with Misty and following the talk, there will be a signing line. Misty will be in conversation with local arts director, Barbara Yokom. 


This event will be held in the Pfeiffer Hall on the campus of North Central College (310 E Benton Avenue, Naperville, IL) and pre-registration is required as space is limited.

 

More about THE WIND AT MY BACK: RESILIENCE, GRACE, AND OTHER GIFTS FROM MY MENTOR, RAVEN WILKINSON:

From celebrated ballerina and New York Times bestselling author Misty Copeland, a heartfelt memoir about her friendship with trailblazer Raven Wilkinson which captures the importance of mentorship, shared history, and honoring the past to ensure a stronger future.

Misty Copeland made history as the first African-American principal ballerina at the American Ballet Theatre. Her talent, passion, and perseverance enabled her to make strides no one had accomplished before. But as she will tell you, achievement never happens in a void. Behind her, supporting her rise was her mentor Raven Wilkinson. Raven had been virtually alone in her quest to breach the all-white ballet world when she fought to be taken seriously as a Black ballerina in the 1950s and 60s. A trailblazer in the world of ballet decades before Misty’s time, Raven faced overt and casual racism, hostile crowds, and death threats for having the audacity to dance ballet.

The Wind at My Back tells the story of two unapologetically Black ballerinas, their friendship, and how they changed each other—and the dance world—forever. Misty Copeland shares her own struggles with racism and exclusion in her pursuit of this dream career and honors the women like Raven who paved the way for her but whose contributions have gone unheralded. She celebrates the connection she made with her mentor, the only teacher who could truly understand the obstacles she faced, beyond the technical or artistic demands.

A beautiful and wise memoir of intergenerational friendship and the impressive journeys of two remarkable women, The Wind at My Back captures the importance of mentorship, of shared history, and of respecting the past to ensure a stronger future.

About the Author

Misty Copeland is a principal dancer at American Ballet Theatre and the author of the New York Times bestsellers Life in Motion, Ballerina Body, Black Ballerinas, and the children’s picture book Bunheads, as well as the award-winning children’s book, Firebird. She made her Broadway debut in 2015’s On the Town, putting the show into the Broadway Box Top 10 for the two weeks that she guest starred as Ivy Smith. She’s been featured in the New York Times and on CBS Sunday Morning and 60 Minutes, and she was named one of Glamour’s Women of the Year and Time magazine’s 100 most influential people. Misty is the recipient of the Young, Gifted & Black Honor at the Black Girls Rock! Awards and the Spingarn Medal, the NAACP’s highest honor.


Barbara Yokom (conversation partner) is a visionary entrepreneur with 30 years of executive leadership, coaching, and consulting experience who excels in empowering others in achieving common goals, rooted in a "crazy great culture."

Thirty-three years ago she started a dance school that grew from 100 students, one room and one employee to a dance, music and theatre school with 1700 students, 16,000 square feet of studio and performance space, and 68 employees. Throughout her career she has also consulted and coached others seeking to achieve their dream of owning their own arts schools or ballet companies. She was responsible for starting the Academy of Dance for The Joffrey Ballet, Chicago, and serving as the Founding Academy Director, as well as founding A&A Ballet and Common Conservatory with their Artistic Directors. She is writing a book on the resilient leadership mindset and the practices that create "crazy great culture" and bottom-line success. She is a high-energy, decisive problem-solver who inspires others to see all possibilities for the highest good of all.  For more information, please visit https://www.barbarayokom.com/. 

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Please read these COVID protection guidelines carefully:

Anderson’s Bookshop reserves the right to change the format of this event to a virtual one at any time if it becomes necessary. Please be advised that Anderson’s Bookshop assumes no responsibility or liability for any personal injury or other loss you may incur as a result of your decision to attend an event, including the transmission of Covid-19 or related illnesses. We expect that for the protection of everyone, all applicable Covid-related protocols will be followed.  Failure to treat all participants with courtesy and respect may result in your expulsion from the event. 

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