Mnikesa Whitaker // Artist Session // Ballet Haven Connecticut

“I was waiting to get better before I started it. But, I’m not getting better.”

Kesa, a classically trained dancer founded Ballet Haven. Ballet Haven is a competitive ballet program in Fair Haven Connecticut’s middle school. Kesa also happens to teach English at Fair Haven along with being a part-time graduate student and living each day with a degenerative autoimmune disease. The disease is eroding her heart, lungs, GI system and muscles. She is also one of my closest friends.¬†Our friendship began over ten years ago through writing letters to one another while she lived in Texas (thankfully, she moved to New Haven soon after). I respect her and trust her deeply. She is full of beauty, fire, grace and wisdom, she is also one of the smartest people I know. Photographing Ballet Haven for the afternoon was a great pleasure. Watching the girls engage ballet through their discipline and dedication was truly inspiring. If you’d like to see more of Kesa and Ballet Haven, please watch this short video and visit Ballet Haven’s GoFundMe page.



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