Watch: Story of ‘unstoppable’ Indonesian ballerina who overcame poverty to win USA championship

Ballet is not exactly a well-known or respected art form in Indonesia and, as photographer Jordan Matter points out at the beginning of this video, it’s considered a luxury just to be able to take dance classes.

But despite the costs and her family’s financial hardships, 11-year-old Rebecca Alexandria Hadibroto’s determination and dedication to ballet not only kept her in the dance studio, it has also led her to become one of the most promising young ballerinas in the world. She earned the distinction of being the first Indonesian ever invited to the prestigious Young American Grand Prix competition in New York in April, and she followed that up by coming in first place in the competition.

Rebecca’s incredibly inspiring tale includes anecdotes about how she faced bullying by her wealthier classmates and even overcame a car accident that injured her leg to return to the ballet studio and win several international competitions.


Beyond her perseverance and incredibly accomplished dancing, it’s Rebecca’s sweet, humble personality that perhaps shines brightest. Truly she represents everything that is outstanding about Indonesia’s most talented young people.

This video was produced by Jordan Matter as part of his “Unstoppable” series about inspiring individuals. Matter, who specializes in capturing dancers in action, also produces the very popular 10 Minute Photo Challenge Series.

We’d love to see what he could do in 10 minutes with Rebecca in the middle of Plaza Indonesia. But really we’ll be happy to see wherever Rebecca’s talents take her next.

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CITY: JAKARTACATEGORY: LIFESTYLESUB-CATEGORIES: ARTS

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