Spoken-Word and Ballet Walk Up to a Barre…

Photo courtesy of Under Armour.

Under Armour’s new ad campaign, Unlike Any, celebrates the athletic gifts of women – Tae kwon do expert Zoe Zhang, long-distance runner Alison Desir, stuntwoman Jessie Graff, Olympic sprinter Natasha Hastings, snowboarder Lindsey Vonn, and future (if not current) ballet legend Misty Copeland – the first African American Female Principal Dancer with the prestigious American Ballet Theatre. The six women have been teamed with poets/writers/spoken word artists who capture their unique gifts and celebrate their groundbreaking athleticism and artistry. Copeland is paired with Saul Williams, and for the occasion he wrote the following:

“The systemic structure built to keep me in place is the stage I dance on / Black and woman… Born in a landmine… I am a testament twirled into afterthought… To match my strength is to feel your own.”

To hear the whole thing and see Copeland in action, press play: