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theballetblog:

Janet Collins, one of the few classically trained Black dancers of her generation.  In 1932, at age 15, she auditioned with success for the prestigious Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo, but as she was required to paint her face and skin white in order to be able to perform, she chose not join the company. In 1951, Janet Collins became the first African American to be hired full-time by the Metropolitan Opera Ballet in New York.
More about Janet