The Prism: Every Side of the Story

pointe shoes

Pointe shoes are shoes worn by dancers in ballet and contemporary dance to allow them to dance on the tips of their toes. These special shoes are extremely strong and durable,  while creating a weighless illusion of the dancers, being that their entire weight is placed in the tip of the pointe shoe.

In the professional world, it is expected that all dancers wear pointe shoes within their  numbers. The shoes are supposed to make the dancers seem light and as though they are flying,. They  should blend seamlessly with the dancer, so it appears as an extension of her, not an attachment. But, until recently, pointe shoes have come in only light shades; the most popular of those being, “European Pink,” leaving dancers of darker complexions shoeless.

Gaynor Minden has been of the first companies that has manufactured shoes for dancers of darker complexions. Up until now, darker dancers have been painting or “pancaking” their pointe shoes with paint  in an attempt to make it match their skin tones.

Being forced to do this, and with companies not stepping up to make the necessary changes, these dancers feel like they don’t belong. Dance is an art and a freeing form of expression for many people, so these dancers feeling like they don’t belong is unacceptable.

Even Misty Copeland, the first African-American woman to get a principal role in the American Ballet Theatre, struggled with  not having shoes for her complexion, but with her dancing claim to fame and powerful influence, she had been a catalyst in the community. She is continuously pushing for more companies to make darker colored pointe shoes.

 


There aren’t words to describe Hadestown! I saw it right before it opened and my first reaction was that I wanted to go see it again! For the uninitiated, Hadestown is an original musical by Anaïs Mitchell and directed by Rachel Chavkin (Natasha, Pierre, and the Great Comet of 1812 / The Royal: A Play in Six Rounds) based on the myths of Hades and Persephone, and Orpheus and Eurydice. But what makes it so good?  

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by Tyler Coley

It’s 6:10 am and I’m awake, staring at my wall. I’d normally be excited to go away, especially to get a day off from school, but this is a business trip. Being on the LWA Varsity Basketball Team comes with its perks, but at the end of the day, hundreds and even thousands of hours are put in to make this team successful. My team and I worked extremely hard for this, putting in the utmost effort at practice- Monday through Saturday since November- and we’re finally here. I arrive at school in the morning, accompanied by my teammates for a quick breakfast, before taking the 5 hour journey to Glens Falls. The bus ride is quiet for a while, and then there are times when we all joke around and laugh together. However, everyone knows in their mind what has to be done. This is a business trip, not a vacation.

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Students of the class of 2019 announced their college decisions to the whole Upper School on National Decision Day, May 1st. On this day, every senior going to college makes his or her deposit for the college of their choice. This was a big day for every senior and even a big day for the underclassmen,  giving them a glimpse of their future.

The seniors dressed in their college apparel or printed out the name of their college to present to the upper school and show their school pride. This event is extremely important as it recognizes the hard work of all the seniors. It also gives the underclassmen a chance not only to appreciate their classmates, but also to inspire them to work hard and look forward to senior year.

The event was exciting for both seniors and underclassmen. Allison Siegel (CO 2019) said that it was “really nice to see everyone so happy.” She added, “Going through this process we all really have to help each other and I think that being able to help each other and then seeing the product of all the hard work was really a special experience.” Another senior, Patrick Smith (CO 2019) shared this view by saying, “It was a great experience to see the achievements of my classmates and being able to celebrate what we (CO 2019) have all worked for.”

Not only was the experience a nice recognition for the seniors it was also beneficial to the underclassmen of the school as well. According to Josie Cannon (CO 2021) the college decisions assembly was “a nice reveal to see where everyone is going to college.” Cannon also added that it “shows that hard work pays off.”

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Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) were originally founded in the United States to allow black Americans the opportunity to pursue higher level education. Attending these universities was essentially the only way to receive a college education as a black American. However, today these universities and colleges exist in a time where schools are no longer segregated. Nonetheless, they are wonderful places where students can be surrounded by their culture, empowered, and supported.

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The PRISM Press

The PRISM Press is the student written, edited, and published newspaper of Lawrence Woodmere Academy © 2019