This article first appeared in the St. Louis Beacon, Oct. 27, 2011 - Female dancers not only get tutus and toe shoes, they also get something else males don't: acceptance.
Little girls who dance are called graceful and talented. Little boys are sometimes called sissies and worse. In "Billy Elliot the Musical," opening at the Fox Theatre Nov. 1, young Billy tries to hide his dancing from his father and brother, British coal miners on strike in 1984. He ultimately suffers their ridicule and that of their poor mining community.