Credit: Lelanie Foster
Misty Copeland offers a glimpse inside her elegant New York home
Misty Copeland has become the first ballet dancer to appear on the cover of Architectural Digest in more than three decades after she opened the doors to her Manhattan home.
The 37-year-old, who was named the American Ballet Theater's principal dancer in 2015 -- the first Black woman to hold that role -- offered the magazine a rare glimpse inside her Upper West Side apartment as part of its forthcoming October issue.
An accompanying interview sees Copeland discussing her design inspirations alongside her husband, lawyer Olu Evans, and the interiors expert who brought the pair's vision to life, Brigette Romanek.
"There are things we just cannot do on our own, and we realized how necessary it was to have a professional team," Copeland is quoted as saying of Romanek. "I did not comprehend how many layers there are to creating a beautiful home that feels organic."
Evans, meanwhile, said that the pair specifically hired a person of color to head up the redesign.
"There was a comfort level there, a vernacular. With Brigette we spoke the same cultural language. I enjoyed that connection," he told the magazine, adding: "I'm always drawn to strong women."
In an extensive photo shoot, readers are taken into the couple's living room, airy kitchen and tastefully decorated bedroom. The glossy eight-page feature also steps inside Copeland's sizable walk-in closet -- a luxury for a New York apartment, but one the dancer had her heart set on.
"My dressing room was my number-one priority," she is quoted as saying.
"I was nervous about that space," added Romanek, who told the magazine that her overall brief for the interiors was "relaxed grandeur, not precious, pretty, dreamy."
"I needed to nail it! Misty has so many events. She needed a place to be alone, to get dressed."
Copeland, who is pictured in the opening spread wearing an elegant Dior dress, purchased the three-bedroom property with Evans two years ago, according to Architectural Digest. Since then, the pair have overseen the redesign, which now comprises clean white walls, dark wooden floors, walnut furniture and a pleasing palette of blues, pinks and oranges.
There are plenty of hard surfaces and durable-looking fittings. "We are not delicate people. We needed things that would age well," Copeland told the magazine. But the overall aesthetic is softened by flashes of velvet upholstery, silk and suede.
The photos also reveal a penchant for rugs, including one by prominent British artist Gary Hume, and another by luxury rug designers, Martin Patrick Evan. And the couple's interest in artists of color is also apparent, with works by painter Asuka Anastacia Ogawa and photographer Lorna Simpson among the art on display at the Upper West Side property.
According to Architectural Digest's editor-in-chief, Amy Astley, it is the first time a ballerina has appeared on the magazine's cover since Rudolf Nureyev, then director of the Paris Opera Ballet, in 1985. The apparent similarities between Nureyev and Copeland's poses for their respective photo shoots was a happy accident, Astley writes in her editor's note, calling the two covers "serendipitously so similar."
"Imagine my utter surprise and delight when the photos arrived: elegant, famous Misty, barefoot and casually seated on the floor in a golden goddess gown and leaning on her velvet sofa in a pose so evocative of the great Nureyev's that you would think we planned it," she wrote.