On Monday, March 15th at 6pm Tom Jones, creator of the The Fantasticks, will interview dancer and choreographer Marge Champion. Marge and her husband Gower Champion were legendary in the 1950s for their dancing in nightclubs, MGM musicals and on television. More recently, she appeared with her current dance partner, Donald Saddler, in a six-month run in the Broadway revival of Stephen Sondheim's Follies in 2001. In 2007 Ms. Champion, who began her dance career with Walt Disney as the live action model for Snow White, was honored with the Disney Legends Award. Following the interview, there will be a question and answer period.
The League of Professional Theatre Women (LPTW), a non-profit organization committed to promoting visibility and increasing opportunities for women in the professional theatre, is pleased to present this interview as an installment of the Edith Meiser Oral History Project, which chronicles and documents the contributions of significant theatre women in many disciplines. Interviews with outstanding women are videotaped and housed in the Theatre on Film and Tape Archive at the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts at Lincoln Center.
Admission is free, however reservations are recommended and may be made by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling (888) 297-3117, ext. 1.
The program begins at 6:00 p.m. in the Bruno Walter Auditorium at the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts, entrance on 65th Street and Amsterdam Avenue.
This program is made possible through the generous support of the Edith Meiser Foundation.
Please check the LPTW website for more information: www.TheatreWomen.org.
Marge and Gower Champion were legendary in the '50s for their dancing in nightclubs, MGM musicals and on television. Born in Hollywood, Marge grew up in the center of the dance and movie world. Her father, Ernest Belcher, was the "dean" of the West Coast dance masters and staged many dance sequences for the movies. He trained Shirley Temple, Cyd Charisse, Gwen Verdon... and Marge.
Marge Champion began her dance career with Walt Disney as the live action model for Snow White, the Blue Fairy in Pinocchio, and the Hippopotamus ballerina in Fantasia. She appeared in The Castles with Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers, on Broadway as the Fair Witch in Dark of the Moon, and in Beggar's Holiday.
During their collaboration, Marge and Gower Champion staged the dances for the Broadway musical revues Lend an Ear and Make a Wish. Their film appearances included Mr. Music with Bing Crosby, Show Boat, Lovely to Look At, That's Dancin', and That's Entertainment, Part II, and on the television shows Toast of the Town, The Dinah Shore Show, and The Marge and Gower Champion Show. The Champions were awarded the 2002 Career Achievement Award of the 8th Annual American Choreography Awards. Ms. Champion was also the choreographer for Whose Life is it Anyway?, The Day of the Locust, and Queen of the Stardust Ballroom, for which she received an Emmy Award.