From the Streets to the Stage: The Journey of Frederick Davis

About This Episode

From the Streets to the Stage: The Journey of Fredrick Davis is the story of a ballet dancer who overcame tremendous odds to achieve his dreams of dancing on stages around the world. Through intimate conversations with Fredrick Davis, and the teachers, family and friends who helped shape his career, the film chronicles Frederick’s journey from New York to Tennessee, and finally back to New York as a company member with the historic Dance Theatre of Harlem.

Fredrick was born in Brooklyn, but after his parents split, he moved to Chattanooga with his mother at the age of four. The separation and the move served as a turning point for his mother, who, after returning to her hometown of Chattanooga, struggled with addiction. His earliest memories are of a childhood spent homeless on the streets, learning to provide for himself and isolating himself from his peers to mask his tumultuous personal life. From an early age, he dreamed of returning to New York to reconnect with his father, and knew that only his own determination and hard work would get him there. “I didn’t know where my life was going,” Frederick remembers. “I just knew that I wanted a way out, and how can I find it?”