2 3 Throwback Thursday and Emma Jutau | Ballet Webb

Thursday, August 16, 2018

Throwback Thursday and Emma Jutau

Throwback Thursday and Emma Jutau

Emma Justau was a gymnast and trapeze performer during the late 1800s. She worked in many venues, including the infamous Koster and Bial’s Music Hall. On February 12, 1889, the New York Times reported that “Emma Jutau has proved a great favorite at Koster & Bial’s, and her wonderful trapeze acts and aerial flights were warmly commended by the audience last night…”

Koster and Bial’s Music Hall began in NYC on the northwest corner of 23rd Street and Sixth Avenue, in an area known for its vice and bad behavior. Soon the theatre expanded into a 2100  seat vaudeville theater located next door at 115-117 West 23rd Street. The history of this establishment https://experiencenomad.com/koster-and-bials-music-hall/  is fascinating, but I digress.

Emma Jutau married fellow gymnast George W. Brown and the book The Social Mirror: A Character Sketch of the Women of Pittsburg  states that Emma was born near Monongahela City and adds that “she is a handsome blonde of a remarkably fine figure”.

Part of Emma’s act is described in the ebook Fun by T. Moffat: “her principal feat is to descend from a great height at a rate of over sixty miles an hour, suspended by her teeth beneath a wire set at an angle of forty-five degrees”.

From the Big Blue Book of Ballet Secrets
Dance History Factoid #145:
“Emma Jutau was a gymnast and trapeze artist in the late 1800s.”

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