July 11, 1958 - September 28, 2022
New York Times:
Stephanie Dabney, a principal dancer with the Dance Theater of Harlem who became an international star and a role model for aspiring Black ballerinas, died on Sept. 28 at a nursing home in Manhattan. She was 64.
Her sister, Janine Dabney-Battle, said the cause was cardiopulmonary arrest. Ms. Dabney had been living with H.I.V. since 1990 and had weathered numerous health complications.
Ms. Dabney was just 16 in 1975, when she joined the Harlem company, which was founded in 1969 by Karel Shook and Arthur Mitchell, the first Black principal dancer at New York City Ballet, to create opportunities for dancers of color.
Mr. Mitchell was a protégé of George Balanchine, and Ms. Dabney was a natural fit for the company’s Balanchine-based neoclassical style. “Stephanie had it all: line, feet, technique, speed, imagination and the most important thing of all, heart,” Virginia Johnson, the company’s artistic director, wrote in an email.
Read entire New York Times article here