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Feb 2, 2021

This week on 5.6.7.EIGHT, Aleksandra interviews Ingrid Silva, an internationally-recognized dancer and serial philanthropist who has founded two empowerment-centric organizations — EmpowHer New York and Blacks in Ballet. Born in Rio de Janeiro, Ingrid’s first exposure to ballet was actually at a social project in a nearby slum. Ingrid eventually found her way to New York City, where she’s currently dancing her seventh season for the Dance Theater of Harlem. Ingrid’s story has been featured in movies and publications such as Vogue and Glamour, Teen Vogue, The New York Times, ESPN Women, and many more.

On the podcast, Ingrid walks through her incredible story and discusses how she is now able to use her journey to encourage others to pursue their goals. Her unique experiences include delivering an address to the United Nations, collaborating with Alicia Keys, being on the cover of Pointe Magazine, and more. And in the discussion, Ingrid shares all of the details around how those experiences came to be and how each of those experiences furthers her goal to empower others across the world.


Moving Quotes:

"It doesn't matter how much you do. It doesn't matter who you are. It doesn't matter how much success you have. You have to fight to express your journey. And your journey is special — only you can see the final project through. Don't be discovered by all of the no’s."

"At the end of the day, we are responsible for our own happiness. If you're not happy, maybe you're not on the right path. You don't have to do something over and over again, just for the sake of being there."

"My own journey has taught me so much about me. We always look to other people for inspiration, but we never find it in ourselves... If I wasn't able to focus on the things I wanted to do, I wouldn't have been able to accomplish those things."

"The journey of a dancer is very particular. You have to find ways to listen to your call — to figure out what your journey in dance is bringing you."

"I've always had teachers along my journey that have always mentioned to me, 'You can be whatever you want to be.' I've been very supported since day one."

[On rejection in dance] "You don't have to put people down in order for them to overcome or for them to show you how good they are... This approach has been destroying people's passions for dance for years."

"A main point in finding your purpose and who you are is seeing how your upbringing has shaped you. Your family really affects the person who you will become — their support, their generosity, their way of believing in your dream."


Bullet Points (w/ timestamps) - Highlighting key topics discussed:

3:19: Ingrid walks through her journey as a dancer and why she finds joy in dancing for the Dance Theatre of Harlem.

7:55: Ingrid shares about some mentors and role models in her life but also explores our ability to also find inspiration inside of ourselves.

10:12: Silva, who was the first African-Brazilian dancer on the cover of Pointe Magazine, discusses how that opportunity came about.

11:57: Silva, who delivered a speech on female empowerment for the United Nations, describes her speech and the organization she founded to fight for this same mission.

16:40: Ingrid describes the experience of collaborating on a project alongside Grammy Award -winning artist Alicia Keys.

19:09: Silva shares about her experience as a Brazilian immigrant to the United States and her organization Blacks in Ballet, which highlights Black dancers globally.

22:03: Silva explains her choice to put her formal education on hold to pursue a professional dance career.

24:18: Ingrid discusses the importance of family when finding your life’s purpose and describes the dance industry’s unhealthy view of rejection and critique.

29:28: Silva shares some tips on setting good goals and executing on those goals.

33:02: Ingrid, who is creating positive change for people groups across the world, shares some tips for leaders who want to bring positive change to themselves and their communities.


Bullet List of Resources – 

Ingrid Silva



Blacks in Ballet