Doing the mashed potato with Dee Dee Sharp … and Steve

Featured · Music
When we last left our friend Steve Vilarino, he was 15 years old and doing the pony at “Hollywood A Go Go,” a teevee-studio teen dance-party broadcast, behind Marvin Gaye singing (er …lip syncing) “Can I Get A Witness.” Steve pops up again, this time doing the mashed potato, appropriately enough to “Mashed Potato Time” ...

Dear, departed Donald McKayle

Dance · Featured
Touching tribute photos of the beloved DONALD MCKAYLE (1930 – 2018), legendary dancer, choreographer, director and consummate teacher and mentor who perished aged 87 after a lengthy illness, April 7, 2018, in Irvine, California.

Liberty Hill Foundation to honor L.A. arts angel Liz Levitt Hirsch

Featured · Music
“Attention must be paid!” says Jane Jelenko, philanthropist, activist, writer, longtime friend to Elizabeth Levitt Hirsh, and co-chairperson of the upcoming Upton Sinclair Awards Dinner, April 19, at the Beverly Hilton Hotel, where Levitt Hirsch will be honored with a Founders Award. “I’ve known Liz for nearly thirty years. I’ve watched her arts activism from ...

A house tinged by antisemitism: Denishawn 1

Dance · Featured
Excerpted from: Humphrey, Doris, “Doris Humphrey: An Artist First,” an autobiography edited and completed by Selma Jeanne Cohen (Wesleyan University Press, Middletown CT), 1972, pp 61-62. The summer of 1928 Charles [Weidman] and I were teaching the classes at the Carnegie Hall studio, while Pauline [Lawrence] played piano. The students were stimulated by our enthusiasm ...

A Jack Cole audition for KISMET (1944)

Dance · Featured · Film
The choreographer Jack Cole is most known for his Oriental dance numbers in KISMET (MGM, 1955) directed by Vincente Minnelli. But a decade prior, also at MGM, Cole choreographed KISMET (1944) starring the non-dancer, Marlene Dietrich. Dancer/ballet instructor Joan Bayley, who went on to become choreographer’s assistant to Robert Alton, auditioned for Cole as a ...

Gwen calls out Bob’s choreography in Gap commercial 2

Dance · Featured
In a 1999 interview, Gwen Verdon (1925 – 2000) expressed mild exasperation at the use of choreography by Bob Fosse (1927 – 1987) in a commercial by The Gap. “It’s very interesting that right now there is “Go Go Khaki,” a commercial for The Gap. They are doing the Frug. It’s amazing. They are not ...