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You Might Know Her From

Feb 20, 2020

Make way for one of our most prestigious guests! Actress, dancer, choreographer, and teacher Carmen de Lavallade joins us this week and becomes our first ever Kennedy Center Honoree. You Might Know Her From Carmen Jones, Odds Against Tomorrow, House of Flowers, and a Streetcar Named Desire. Carmen dishes on her beginnings as a dancer with Alvin Ailey, being cast in the historic movie musical Carmen Jones starring Dorothy Dandridge and Harry Belafonte, and teaching at Yale where her students included a young Meryl Streep. An embarrassment of riches that could only be topped by the news that Busta Rhymes was a true gentleman. *cue Soul Bossa nova*

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Discussed this week:

Julainne Hough energy removal


is “not straight” 

Is a cult leader of Kinrgy (also here

Is in Burlesque 

Has been given an platform by Oprah

Marie Osmond dances as a doll on DWTS

Tom Bergeron charms us (narrow shoulders,)

Shira Piven improv teacher

Carrie Ann Inaba was a Fly Girl

Rosie Perez starred in revival of The Ritz

CBS Sunday Morning on Carmen’s Kennedy Center honor (other honorees that year: Norman Lear, LL Cool J, Herbie Hancock)

Sondra Lee connected us to Carmen

Was married to Geoffrey Holder

Dance teachers: Lester Horton, Carmelita Maracci, Melissa Blake

Cecchetti method 

Took Alvin Ailey to his first dance class

Carmen Jones (dir: Otto Preminger || choreo: Herbert Ross) Dorothy Dandridge, Harry Belartone, Pearl Bailey, Diahann Carroll

Bar scene in Carmen Jones = ”Beat Out dat Rhythm on a Drum

Susan Hayward’s handmaiden in Demetrius & the Gladiators (w/ Victor Mature)

Lydia Bailey choreographed by Jack Cole

Danced with Josephine Baker at The Olympia in Paris 1964

Mentor to Misty Copeland 

Mildred Dunnock got her to Yale where she taught movement to Meryl, Sigourney, Wendy Wasserstein, and Joe Gifasi

Yale 1975: A Midsummer Night’s Dream she played Titania opposite Christopher Lloyd’s Oberon (+Tony Shalhoub Meryl, and Alvin Epstein). Christopher Lloyd injured tendon during production

Sang at Carnegie hall with Benny Goodman

Lotte Lenya; Billie Holliday interpreters of song

Flores para los muertos” streetcar directed by Debbie Allen

Odds Against Tomorrow (dir: Robert Wise)

Dancing to Soul Bossa Nova (Wuiny Joncrs) 

Refused Kennedy Center White House reception

Hand kissed by Busta Rhymes