Seeking Jack Cole at the Rainbow Room

Architecture & Design · Dance · Featured · Music
It was a lovely holiday event, a swellegant affair. First Republic Bank of New York, generous supporters of myriad arts organizations, threw a reception at the Rainbow Room high atop Rockefeller Center. Rocking the Room were the Fat Afro Latin Jazz Cats, whose youthful big-band sound boomed beneath the clatter of cocktailers while the crazy ...

Jack Cole’s nightclub act: a talk by Debra Levine Oct 25

Dance · Language & ideas
A review headline screamed, “Cyclone Hits Slapsy Maxie’s.” The performance?  Jack Cole and His Dancers at the Wilshire Boulevard supper club in 1948. In the house: Frank Sinatra, Robert Walker, Jimmy Durante, Lucille Ball, Judy Garland, Gene Kelly, Jimmy Dorsey, Max Baer. Also, according to the review, “Bullets Durgom still without a toupee.” Cole and ...

Why and when Ethel Martin started wearing hats

Dance · Theater
Yet another delicious show-business nugget from the plain-spoken Jack Cole dancer Ethel Martin, courtesy of the New York Public Library of the Performing Arts: So out of working for Jack [Cole] at the Casa [the Casa Manana, Billy Rose’s night club] , Jack held auditions for Something for the Boys. He took me. He didn’t ...

Love for Ethel Martin

Dance · Film
Yes, love for Ethel Martin, the career-long Jack Cole dancer whose consistent, forthright and outspoken advocacy for Cole is nourishing my research. I agree with Ethel’s assessment whole-heartedly; she saw in Cole a great Unsung Genius. She devoted her career and all of her feisty spirit to him. In turn, I am doing my best ...

At Central Opera House, Cole choreographed ‘Bonanza Bound’

Architecture & Design · Dance
The former Central Opera House at 205 East 67th Street in New York City, pictured above. Here Jack Cole labored to create dance numbers for a notorious Broadway bomb, Bonanza Bound (1947). The turkey, however, had top talent behind it. A very rare musical flop by  Comden and Green. After their astonishing rise from cabaret ...

Thank you, New York! It ended with THE I DON’T CARE GIRL 4

Dance · Film
A force stronger than Jack Cole — Mother Nature — caused the rescheduling of snow-cancelled programs, giving a new finale to “All That Jack (Cole)” at The Museum of Modern Art. The closing picture was THE I DON’T CARE GIRL, a “B” movie musical whose titular dance number, as I wrote on MoMA’s “Inside/Out” blog, ...

Barrie Chase: a beautiful doll who danced for Jack Cole

Dance · Film
She’s a dancer’s dancer, a real stunner. The ballet-trained Barrie Chase was the leggiest creature since Cyd Charisse to hit the Hollywood gypsy-dance circuit when she got a gig as a chorus dancer in Vincent Minnelli‘s KISMET (1955). The choreographer? The great Jack Cole whom The Museum of Modern Art is honoring in All That ...

Connoisseur’s choice: Saturday January 23 @ MoMA

Dance · Film
1:00 pm. Introduced by Barrie Chase, Les Girls. 1957. USA. Directed by George Cukor. Screenplay by John Patrick. Music by Cole Porter. Dances by Jack Cole, Gene Kelly. With Kelly, Mitzi Gaynor, Kay Kendall, Taina Elg. 114 min. Backed by an MGM budget, Cole contributes dances of Cukor-esque sophistication. The multifarious “Les Girls” number accommodates ...

MoMA curator Roy gives context to Cole retrospective

Dance · Film
Why should The Museum of Modern Art undertake a comprehensive retrospective of the works of a film choreographer? MoMA Chief Film Curator Rajendra Roy shares his well-articulated thesis behind the museum’s upcoming Jack Cole retrospective with writer Hilary Lewis of The Hollywood Reporter. Explains Roy: In late January … we’re honoring Jack Cole, who was ...

Jack Cole, Jerry Robbins put dancing sailors into the zeitgeist, 1944-5

Dance · Film
The war was just over — September 2, 1945. The streets of the nation, especially the big cities like New York and Los Angeles, had been teeming with military men. So it’s not that unusual that choreographers were putting these figures into their dances. And yet, it’s odd, isn’t it, that a trio of sailors ...