2 3 Throwback Thursday and James Starbuck | Ballet Webb

Thursday, November 29, 2018

Throwback Thursday and James Starbuck

Throwback Thursday and James Starbuck

James Starbuck grew up in Oakland California and went on to become the first American man to dance with the Ballet Russes de Monte Carlo. Prior to this he performed with the San Francisco Opera Ballet.

He went on to dance in several Broadway productions including “Song of Norway” and “Sleepy Hollow” and then choreographed shows such as “Fanny”. But the best was yet to come. He began to work in what was then a new medium: television. Soon he was called the “Dean of Choreography”. He worked on classic shows like Sid Caesar’s “Show of Shows where he performed satires of classical ballets, often appearing as Imogene Coca’s partner. These satirical pieces opened ballet to new audiences (see the Link of the Day).

He earned two Emmy Awards for "Arthur Murray's Dance Party" and "The Andy Williams Show." His work was also seen in many other television shows like the Bob Hope specials and the Bell Telephone Hour.

James Starbuck died of pancreatic cancer in August 1997. He was 85.

From the Big Blue Book of Ballet Secrets
Dance History Secret #200:
James Starbuck was an American dancer and choreographer known for his satirical ballets on early American television.”

Link of the Day:

Quote of the Day:
“Fantasy is a necessary ingredient in living, it's a way of looking at life through the wrong end of a telescope.”
― Dr. Seuss

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