Life and careerEdit
Edwards was born and raised in Baltimore, Maryland. She began ballet lessons at age three. Edwards attended Baltimore School for the Arts for high school, where she majored in dance. After high school she worked several part-time jobs while working as a freelance dancer.
In 2012, Edwards was attacked in a parking structure by a stranger and awakened in the woods, where her attacker beat her up and raped her. Edwards' mental health deteriorated as she failed to receive support from her family, then-fiancé, and the police. She spent time in a psychiatric facility and began attending counseling sessions at a center for sexual assault survivors. Edwards returned to taking dance classes and credits them with helping her cope with the trauma.
Ballet After DarkEdit
In May 2015 Edwards founded Ballet After Dark, a "ballet-based fitness program that includes a self-care workshop for sexual and domestic assault survivors." The Baltimore-based organization was the subject of a documentary film by the same name, which premiered at Tribeca Film Festival in 2019. Ballet After Dark was directed by B. Monet and produced and distributed by Queen Latifah's talent company Queen Collective.
- Bonk, Valerie. "Ballet After Dark uses dance, meditation to heal emotional scars". The Baltimore Sun. Retrieved 2020-04-13.
- "The Turning Point". Baltimore magazine. 2019-03-19. Retrieved 2020-04-13.
- Griffith, Lacee (2017-05-24). "Ballet After Dark gives light to women coping with tragedy". WBAL. Retrieved 2020-04-13.
- "See How This Ballerina Rape Survivor Is Helping Other Victims Through Dance". BET.com. Retrieved 2020-04-13.
- Kast, Sheilah; Gerr, Melissa. "Reprocess, Rebuild, Reclaim with Ballet After Dark". wypr.org. Retrieved 2020-04-13.
- "Ballet Helped Me Reconnect with My Body After Being Raped—Now I'm Helping Others Do the Same". Shape. Retrieved 2020-04-13.
- Hayes, Dade (2019-03-11). "Tribeca Film Festival Unveils Shorts Lineup; Feature Slate Includes John DeLorean, Muhammad Ali, Chelsea Manning – Update". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved 2020-04-13.
- Nichols, Mackenzie (2020-01-30). "Queen Latifah on Diversity in Storytelling: 'I Don't Know What Everybody's So Afraid of'". Variety. Retrieved 2020-04-13.