Saturday Open Thread

I hope you are enjoying this weekend with family and friends.

I always try to bring something positive on Saturday.

A Dallas Mom Who Knew Nothing About Dance Started the Brown Girls Do Ballet Movement
Daria Harper | November 1, 2017 | 4:00am

A few years ago, photographer Takiyah Wallace was searching for a dance studio in Dallas for her 3-year-old daughter, who had expressed an interest in ballet, when she noticed something.

“One of the first things that jumped out to me in visiting local studios here was that there were not any faces that looked like her,” she says.

After selecting a studio far from home, Wallace began a personal photography project to find and document ballerinas of color. In 2014, that project blossomed into the nonprofit organization Brown Girls Do Ballet, which has taken the dance world by storm and received coverage in Huffington Post, on BET and in Allure magazine.

As a newcomer to the world of ballet and dance in general, Wallace was shocked by how many parents related to her struggle.

“It was a personal want and desire for me to look for dancers of color because of what I was seeing in looking for classes for my daughter,” Wallace says. “I didn’t realize that it was something other people were looking for as well.”

After posting a Facebook casting call for dancers in Dallas, Houston and Austin, Wallace received an overwhelming number of responses from people nationwide.

“I didn’t understand what the word viral meant,” she says. “But I learned very quickly that viral meant you don’t sleep.”


Last month, Brown Girls Do Ballet released a mini-documentary, We Assemblé, which “hopes to inspire viewers while shedding light on triggering topics such as body image issues, discrimination and searching for confidence through dancing.”

Professional and emerging dancers of color appear in the film, including Layla Brent, Sierra Noelle Jones, Olivia Bell and Brooke Terry. The hope is that the film will reach a broader audience and help the organization meet its goal of funding a college scholarship for the first time.

Brown Girls Do Ballet also recently began a podcast, and the organization’s umbrella expanded to include Brown Girls Do Gymnastics. Wallace says she has plans to grow the mentorship program beyond ballet and gymnastics by the end of 2018.

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14 Responses to Saturday Open Thread

  1. CARSON…..

  2. yahtzeebutterfly says:

    Arkansas Moves to Ban Monsanto’s Blockbuster Herbicide
    Defying a lawsuit from the seed and pesticide giant, Arkansas put its foot down.

    “The farm-country showdown over an herbicide called dicamba, used on a genetically engineered seeds product marketed by Monsanto, just heated up. At a public meeting on Wednesday, the Arkansas State Plant Board voted by a vote of 10 to 3 to ban most applications of the weedkiller between April 16 and October 31. Scott Partridge, Monsanto’s vice president of global strategy, attended the meeting and gave a presentation defending the herbicide.

    “The EPA reports 3.6 million acres of soybeans were damaged by dicamba this year, as well as untold acres of tomatoes, watermelon, cantaloupe, vineyards, and even residential gardens.
    The company, meanwhile, has a lawsuit pending, launched in October, seeking to “prevent the Plant Board from continuing to regulate the use of Monsanto’s new low-volatility dicamba herbicide.” Back on July 11, Arkansas banned dicamba for 120 days.

    The new ban, which awaits final approval from a state legislative subcommittee, would essentially halt use in Arkansas of Monsanto’s latest blockbuster seeds next year: soybean and cotton varieties engineered to withstand both dicamba and glyphosate. These products offer farmers the ability to to spray dicamba directly on crops, leaving them intact while weeds die. But soybeans and cotton don’t emerge until early May—after the ban kicks in.

    “Arkansas acted because dicamba has a tendency to volatilize—that is, after it has been applied, it’s prone to convert into a gas be carried from its intended site, potentially harming vegetation that gets in its path. The volatility problem increases as temperatures rise, hence the ban on use during warm months.

    “In response to the problem, Monsanto, as well as rival agrichemical giants BASF and DuPont, brought out “low-volatility” dicamba formulations, but this past growing season—the new seeds’ first year in widespread use—saw an explosion of complaints throughout the soybean belt of off-target damage. The Environmental Protection Agency reports 3.6 million acres of non-resistant soybeans alone were damaged by dicamba this year, as well as untold acres of tomatoes, watermelon, cantaloupe, vineyards, pumpkins, vegetables, tobacco, residential gardens, trees, and shrubs.”

  3. Ametia says:

    Happy Saturday, 3 Chics Family!

  4. Liza says:

    Happy Veterans Day!

    This is an excerpt from Ken Burn’s Vietnam documentary. One of the veterans he interviewed and who is seen throughout the documentary, John Musgrave, describes what happened when he was shot during an ambush in Con Thien, South Vietnam in 1967.

  5. Ametia says:

    David Von Drehle
    Democrats, cut the cheer

    Democrats are still acting as though demography is destiny when they need to woo whites.

    Read more »

  6. rikyrah says:

    Good Morning, Everyone 😄😄😄

    • yahtzeebutterfly says:

      Good Morning, Rikyrah.

      What a great post you brought us today!

      Your post inspired me to go looking for a Youtube video about Takiyah Wallace and her “Brown Girls Do Ballet” movement.

      “How Brown Girls Do Ballet Creates Safe Space for Black Ballerinas”

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