From The Streets To The Stage Round Table Discussion Is Tuesday

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Fredrick Davis grew up on the streets of Chattanooga and suffered a childhood with seemingly no future.  When he was 11 Fredrick was introduced to Ballet Tennessee and the Dance Alive program offered through the Department of Parks and Recreation.  Dance became his dream and, with the help of his church and the Chattanooga arts community, Fredrick would follow that dream to New York City, becoming a principal at the Dance Theatre of Harlem. 

“In overcoming the challenges and hardships of his youth Fredrick Davis inspires us all and gives our youth a vision of how to create success with perseverance, a strong will and the support of the community,” says Erskine Oglesby, president of 100 Black Men of Chattanooga.  “Becoming a principal dancer at the Dance Theatre of Harlem was his dream and Fredrick’s success teaches us all that dreams are possible.” 

Today Mr. Davis returns to Chattanooga regularly, inspiring other children to follow their dreams and teaching them through the Dance Alive program.  WTCI, Chattanooga’s community PBS station, is working on a documentary about his life, his struggles and the collaboration of organizations that lifted him up to overcome those odds.  

Mr. Davis, 100 Black Men of Chattanooga, Mr. Oglesby and WTCI will host a round table conversation, dance performance and discussion on the plans for the documentary on Mr. Davis' life, on Tuesday at 5:30 p.m. at the Bessie Smith Cultural Center.  

Moderated by Stacy Lightfoot, vice president of PEF, and Tori VanCura, Ballet Tennessee, this round table discussion will address Mr. Davis' early life, his struggles and the partnerships with Ballet Tennessee, the city of Chattanooga and the Center for Creative Arts that made his dreams reality.  Mr. Davis will talk about his career at the Dance Theatre of Harlem, his work with Chattanooga’s Dance Alive program and the importance of guiding today’s youth toward their dreams.

Guests will enjoy refreshments, have an opportunity to talk with Mr. Davis and see a Ballet Tennessee performance.  Please visit to register for this free event, call Ann Cater at 702-7805 or email at

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