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female professionals Famous Female Ballerinas

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List of famous female ballerinas, featuring bios and photos when available. This female ballerinas list contains the most prominent and top females known for being ballerinas. You might also be interested in famous male ballet dancers and celebrities who danced ballet. The female ballerinas of note are listed by their level of prominence, and you can be sorted by various bits of information like date of birth or birthplace. There are thousand of females working as ballerinas in the world, but this list highlights only the notable ones.

Everyone from Galina Ulanova to Misty Copeland is included on this list of popular female ballet dancers. Featuring Russian, Spanish, Italian, and more, this list has many familiar names in the ballet world. 

While this isn't a list of all female ballerinas, it does answer the questions "Who are the most famous female ballerinas in the world?" and "Who are the best female ballerinas?"

The most notable female ballerinas in history and today are shown below. Enjoy this list of well-known, leading female ballerinas. If you want to share these historic female ballerinas you can use one of the social media icons at the top or bottom of the page. 

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Misty Copeland is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list Famous Female Ballerinas
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Misty Copeland is an author, entertainer, and American ballet dancer for American Ballet Theatre, one of the three leading classical ballet companies in the United States. She is the third African-American soloist and first in two decades with ABT, where she has endured the cultural pressure ...more

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Age: 34

Birthplace: Kansas City, Missouri, United States of America

Profession: Ballet Dancer

Also Ranked

#17 on The Best SYTYCD Judges of All Time

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Suzanne Farrell is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list Famous Female Ballerinas
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Suzanne Farrell is an eminent 20th-century ballerina and the founder of the Suzanne Farrell Ballet at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. ...more

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Age: 71

Birthplace: Cincinnati, Ohio, United States of America

Profession: Ballet Dancer, Dance Teacher

Credits: Dancing for Mr. B: Six Balanchine Ballerinas, A Midsummer Night's Dream, Choreography by Balanchine: Tzigane, Andante from Divertimento No. 15 The Four Temperaments, + more

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Natalia Makarova is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list Famous Female Ballerinas
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Natalia Romanovna Makarova is a Soviet-Russian-born prima ballerina and choreographer. The History of Dance, published in 1981, notes that “her performances set standards of artistry and aristocracy of dance which mark her as the finest ballerina of her generation in the West.” ...more

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Age: 76

Birthplace: Saint Petersburg, Russia

Profession: Ballet Dancer, Choreographer, Actor

Credits: Swan Lake: The Royal Ballet, Swan Lake: Tchaikovsky, Natasha: Natalia Makarova, The Glory of the Kirov Minkus: La Bayadère: Teatro alla Scala, + more

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Maddie Ziegler is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list Famous Female Ballerinas
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Madison Nicole "Maddie" Ziegler is an American child dancer, actress, and model. She is known for starring in Lifetime's Dance Moms, and has appeared in numerous music videos, including the video for Sia's "Chandelier". ...more

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Age: 13

Birthplace: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA

Profession: Actor

Credits: Dance Moms

Also Ranked

#36 on The Next Generation Of Stars (Age 20 and Under)

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Carolyn George is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list Famous Female Ballerinas
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Carolyn George was an American ballerina, photographer, and dance instructor. ...more

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Age: Died at 82 (1927-2009)

Birthplace: Dallas, Texas, United States of America

Profession: Ballet Dancer, Dance Instructor, Photographer

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Nadia Nerina is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list Famous Female Ballerinas
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22

Nadia Nerina


Nadia Nerina was a South African ballerina. She moved to England and joined the Sadler's Wells Theatre Ballet, where she became a prima ballerina at the age of 25. She was one of the first western dancers to appear with the Bolshoi Ballet in Moscow during the Cold War. She retired in 1969 and died ...more

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Age: Died at 81 (1927-2008)

Birthplace: Bloemfontein, South Africa

Profession: Ballet Dancer

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Phyllida Crowley Smith is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list Famous Female Ballerinas
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Phyllida Crowley Smith is an English ballerina, theatre actress and choreographer. Born on the Isle of Wight, England, she studied at the Bush Davies School of Theatre Arts. She won The Cosmopolitan Magazine Award for Best Younger Dancer at the age of 16. Theatre credits include Heathcliff, Andrew ...more

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Age: 49

Birthplace: Isle of Wight, England

Profession: Ballet Dancer, Choreographer, Actor, Singer

Credits: Beyond the Sea, Cats

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Zizi Jeanmaire is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list Famous Female Ballerinas
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Zizi Jeanmaire was a singer, dancer, ballerina,and actress. ...more

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Age: 92

Birthplace: France, Paris

Profession: Ballet Dancer, Actor, Singer, Dancer

Credits: Hans Christian Andersen, Anything Goes, Carmen, Black Tights Carmen, + more

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