September 10 Birthday: FOOTWORK: THE STORY OF FRED AND ADELE ASTAIRE


Adele Astaire, dancer
September 10, 1896-January 25, 1981

Footwork: The Story of Fred and Adele Astaire by Roxanne Orgill, illustrated by Stephane Jorisch (Candlewick, 2007)

As young children, Adele was tapped as the “real dancer” but in time it was clear that Fred had an affinity for dancing, too. On the road with the vaudeville circuit, Fred and Adele were popular performers. After a two-year break, they returned to the stage and the act got better and better. Eventually Adele left and Fred went to Hollywood where he danced into the hearts of movie-goers everywhere.

From PBS Broadway Musical comes an overview of the Astaires and their accomplishments.

June 3 Birthday – Josephine Baker, JAZZ AGE JOSEPHINE

Josephine Baker, dancer, singer
June 3, 1906-Apr. 12, 1975

Jazz Age Josephine: Dancer, Singer–Who’s that, who? Why, that’s MISS Josephine Baker to you! by Jonah Winter, illustrated by Marjorie Priceman (Atheneum Books for Young Readers, 2012).

A famous singer, actor, dancer who danced to her own beat. Rising up from the poor and breaking through racial barriers, Josephine Baker shined every time she stepped onto the stage.

May 10 Birthday: Fred Astaire

Fred Astaire, dancer

May 10, 1889-June 22, 1987

Footwork: The Story of Fred and Adele Astaire by Roxane Orgill, illustrated by Stephane Jorisch (Candlewick, 2007)

As young children, Adele was tapped as the “real dancer” but in time it was clear that Fred had an affinity for dancing, too. On the road with the vaudeville circuit, Fred and Adele were popular performers. After a two-year break, they returned to the stage and the act got better and better. Eventually Adele left and Fred went to Hollywood where he danced into the hearts of movie-goers everywhere.

Time.com offers this tribute: Fred Astaire: 1899-1987: The Great American Flyer.

January 12: Jose Limon. JOSE! BORN TO DANCE

Jose Limon, dancer
Jan. 12, 1908-Dec. 2, 1972

Jose! Born to Dance by Susanna Reich, illustrated by Raul Colon (Paula Wiseman Books, Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, 2005)

Jose
“wanted to give a gift to the world, but he didn’t know what it could
be.” Until….he discovered dance. Thus began his spectacular career as a
dancer, choreographer and creator of his own dance company.

Limon’s dance lives. Visit the Limon Dance Company and Foundation website to learn about upcoming performances and the heritage of the organization.