Tiny Dancer: Mary Helen Bowers

Meet the Charlotte native who trained Natalie Portman and whose ballet workout videos hit shelves this year

Who: Mary Helen Bowers
WHAT: The thirty-two-year-old Charlotte native helped train Natalie Portman in ballet for her Oscar-winning turn last year in Black Swan. The publicity has helped the former New York City Ballet dancer triumph in her own role: entrepreneur. Bowers founded Ballet Beautiful in 2008 to help women develop dancers’ lithe physiques through specialized workouts. The company now has roughly 10,000 clients worldwide, a website, studio space in SoHo, and growing revenue from DVD sales (she released two workout videos this year and plans to market them heavily over the holidays). “There’s a real creative aspect to what I do,” she says, “and I love being able to share that with other women.”