How ‘Lola’ helped Bob Fosse handle Gwen’s ‘bad reputation’

Dance
In a 1991 interview with Gwen Verdon on CUNY Television, the great Gwen describes her first encounter with Fosse as her choreographer for Damn Yankees. I had seen [Fosse] at MGM studios. We had met at a party that Michael Kidd gave. I had a reputation for being difficult … and I was. I was ...

Bob Fosse ‘wunderbar’ in MY SISTER EILEEN at retrospective 3

Dance · Film
It came as a mild surprise even to arts·meme‘s Debra Levine, despite delivering a talk, “Bob Fosse, Dancer,” prior to the two movie musicals (both named for ladies!) screened on August 25, 2018 at UCLA Film & Television Archive’s “Fosse, Fosse, Fosse!” retrospective. Bob Fosse was a good movie star! First up was KISS ME ...

Mere mortals to evoke Verdon & Fosse, giants of American dance

Dance · Film
Nicole Fosse (middle), artistic director of The Verdon Fosse Legacy and co-producer of a newly announced FX Networks mini-series now in development about her parents’ professional and romantic bond, poses with the talented actors, Michelle Williams and Sam Rockwell, slated to play the leading roles of Gwen Verdon and Bob Fosse. On the one hand, ...

Bob Fosse, dancer, at UCLA Film & Television Archive

Dance · Film
We’re all familiar with Bob Fosse, choreographer, and Bob Fosse, film director, right? And if we aren’t, UCLA Film & Television Archive is giving us a great opportunity to catch up as it celebrates a key influencer of modern cinema in “Fosse, Fosse, Fosse!” Fosse was a rarity … he advanced from dancer to choreographer ...

Gwen calls out Bob’s choreography in Gap commercial 4

Dance
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 ...

Gwen falls for Fred, but he does not fall back

Dance
From an interview with James Heneghan, son of the great Gwen Verdon … remembers James: “We were walking down the street in Beverly Hills, and I was walking next to my Mom. I was grown up.” “All of a sudden she fell off the curb and landed on the front of a car! “I said, ...

Judy Garland’s admiration for Gwen Verdon’s husband

Dance
Recently researching dance history at the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts, I came across this nugget from Gwen Verdon. In an interview, Gwen recounted a story with droll wit, Judy Garland once said to me, “Oh your husband has done such a marvelous job!” And I said who??? Because I really did ...

Chita Rivera conquers Carnegie Hall

Dance · Music · Reviews · Theater
Holding court in her Carnegie Hall debut Monday evening, Broadway legend Chita Rivera gave gobs of pleasure and a pre-election-day boost to a very well-sold house. Prior to the show, a good many attendees swarmed the 57th Street sidewalk in anticipation of a special evening. In a solo showcase that got by with a little ...

Gwen & Chita’s ‘Nowadays’ better than ours

Dance · Theater
In this yummilicious snippet from the Tony Award broadcast of 1984, Broadway goddesses Chita Rivera and Gwen Verdon deliver a pastiche-pairing of numbers from Bob Fosse’s “Chicago.” Chita electrifies with her song-and-dance forcefulness in “All That Jazz.” But Verdon, joining for “Nowadays,” gives a lesson in subtle upstaging — no easy feat considering her dance ...

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 ...