In the middle of one of Rio de Janeiro’s infamous favelas, poverty-ridden areas known for their high-crime rates and violent drug overlords, Tuany Nascimento, a 22 year-old dancer and resident of the favela, teaches ballet.
Since 2012, Tuany has been running Na Ponta dos Pés — “On Tiptoes” — a social project through which she teaches free ballet classes to over 40 students aged between four and fifteen. In a place where teenage pregnancy, prostitution and drug abuse run rampant and might seem like unavoidable facts of life, On Tiptoes offers a place of respite – a means through which young women can reevaluate their self-worth and reimagine their future.
Despite the difficulties they face on a daily basis, including having dance practice postponed due to the alarming sounds of gunfire, Tuany leads by example and perseveres; relying on the discipline and beauty of ballet to demonstrate that there is a different path, a different future for those born in the favela.
Director: Ayelet Vardi
Cinematographer: Felipe Lion
Editor: Pedro Knoll
Produced by: Cinema Tribu in association with Expresso4