Grover Dale’s Labor Day wish for dancers

Dance · Language & ideas
It takes a dance legend with a resume as impressive as dancer/choreographer/dance educator Grover Dale to bring it down to what really matters. Yes, it’s work. Yes, you need the money. But, hey, dancer … do it because you have to. The above sketch was shared on this Labor Day weekend by Grover, the creative ...

Barrie Chase rocks the Hermes sandal 4

Dance · Fashion
An interview with the statuesque and still gorgeous Barrie Chase spurred a Facebook exchange about the hip-looking Grecian-style sandals the cool sixties dance-doll wears in these photos. First to comment was longtime ballet master and presenter Don Hewitt, “I have called them Hermes sandals. I thought Bologna’s famous bronze of Mercury/Hermes “en attitude” was wearing ...

Travis!

Dance
An interview with Travis Wall, dancer/choreographer for “So You Think You Can Dance,” and his concert dance company, “Shaping Sound,” which has two October showcases at The Broad Stage. Wall is under consideration in his fifth consecutive Emmy nomination for Outstanding Choreography. Read my interview with Travis Wall, just published on the website of the ...

Rita Hayworth to Jack Cole: You Excite Me

Dance · Film
by 
Clearly if Jack Cole excited Rita Hayworth, the feeling was mutual. The above beautiful, posed color still from Columbia Pictures’ marvelous wartime dance-filled musical, “Tonight and Every Night” (1945, chor: Jack Cole) captures “You Excite Me” — a wild rumba-rhythmed concoction Cole cooked for Hayworth. The photo features six of Rita’s dancing colleagues at Columbia ...

Meet Marilyn Meme•roe

Dance · Film · Language & ideas
From Wikipedia: Memetics is a theory of mental content based on an analogy with Darwinian evolution, originating from the popularization of Richard Dawkins’ 1976 book The Selfish Gene. Proponents describe memetics as an approach to evolutionary models of cultural information transfer. The choreographer Jack Cole, a creative genius, had the ability to perpetuate the meme ...

Dance across the Pacific Isles with ‘Cinerama South Seas Adventure’

Dance · Film
A cruise ship wending it way across the South Pacific, with visits to Hawaii, Tahiti, Tonga and Fiji, includes a film crew shooting footage of native culture. Camera-captured in 1958 in “Cinerama South Sea Adventure,” it sounds pretty colorful, doesn’t it? Now a legendary travelogue, “South Sea,” one of the great exercises in wide-screen projection ...

Fosse unfurled

Dance
A true magnum opus, arts·meme contributor Larry Billman‘s authoritative essay on choreographer Bob Fosse written in 2012 for the Dance Heritage Coalition‘s “100 American Dance Treasures” series. Read it here. American dancer and choreographer Bob Fosse (1927 – 1987) works out routines alone at the Broadway Arts Studio (1755 Broadway at 55th Street), New York, January ...

This was Denishawn

Dance
We’re looking forward to spending an evening  — picnic and free music concert — at outdoor-amphitheater Levitt Pavilion Los Angeles in MacArthur Park on June 12. Does everyone know the rich dance history of that neighborhood, whose prior name “Westlake” derived from the beautiful urban lake that the park surrounds? Read this, first, from the ...

Ravishing dance-film journey to Havana

Dance · Film · Reviews
“Dancing for My Havana,” an Italian/Cuban co-production written and directed by Claudio Del Punta, has garnered the Special Jury Prize of the Dance Camera West festival 2015. The film, a colorful wonderland set in Havana’s romantic urban ruins, tells a love story interpersed with sensational dance numbers that give a rare glimpse into unadulterated Cuban ...

Cyd Charisse at the ballet barre, in full flush of Technicolor

Dance · Film
In opening moments of director Henry Koster’s The Unfinished Dance (1947), the audience gets the distinct pleasure of peering in as ballerina Mlle Bouchet (Cyd Charisse) does her daily warm-up. The gorgeous burnt-yellow tutu Cyd wears is the vision of costume designer Helen Rose. The color-saturated image — the yellow costume, Cyd’s red-red lipstick against ...