Ballet World Protests After Lara Spencer Implies Dancing Is Not For Boys
Last month, “Good Morning America” host Lara Spencer implied that ballet was not for boys when she was reporting on 6 year-old Prince George taking dance classes. Afterwards, the ballet world responded by launching a massive protest.
“In addition to the usual first or second grade things, like math, science and history, the future King of England will be putting down the Play-Doh to take on religious studies, computer programming, poetry and ballet, among other things,” Spencer said. “I mean, he looks so happy about the ballet class! Prince William says Prince George absolutely loves ballet. I have news for you, Prince William: We’ll see how long that lasts.”
Reporter Courtney Escoyne explained exactly why Spencer’s comment was so offensive.
“A grown woman bullying a 6-year-old child. On national television. To laughter and applause,” she said. “If that seems okay to you, I would recommend finding your nearest dance studio and enrolling in an open class, because your empathy could use a serious tune-up.”
Male dancers are constantly bullied simply for doing what they love. When she realized how many people she had hurt with her comments, Spencer apologized.
“I screwed up, I did,” Spencer said. “The comment I made about dance was insensitive, it was stupid, and I am deeply sorry. I’ve spoken with several members of the dance community over the past few days. I have listened. I have learned about the bravery that it takes for a young boys to pursue a career in dance.”
Spencer also interviewed dancers Robbie Fairchild, Fabrice Calmels, and Travis Wall about their careers, turning her comments into a teachable moment. Calmels ended up organizing a peaceful protest to shine a light on the beauty of dance for men.
“Anybody that wants to come and take a ballet class with us tomorrow morning outside of Good Morning America we are going to meet at 6:30 a.m. 44th and Broadway,” he wrote on Instagram. “Bring your tights; bring your shoes; bring your sneakers, anything you want. We are gonna do some plies, some tendus, and have a great time! Bring your friends, let’s dance! Yeah we are going to warm you up, no worries. Yeah, Good Morning America. Tomorrow morning …Bye!”
“I believe we steered this painful moment into a great conversation celebrating dance and defending boys who are bullied for doing it. Lara was heartfelt, teary and incredibly remorseful,” Fairchild said afterwards. “She owned up and apologized for her remarks and I forgive her and thank her for doing all she could to right her wrong. I hope in time we can all find forgiveness in our hearts once the pain we have felt disappates a bit. After all, we are all human and make mistakes.”
Find out more in the video below.