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Three Supremely Talented Ladies

DO40 Welcomes Three Supremely Talented Ladies
to the Advisory Board

Dancers Over 40 has been blessed over the past few months with the addition of three super talented women to its Advisory Board. They represent the very best in dance. All of them continue to practice their craft to the delight – and applause – of appreciative fans.

CHITA RIVERA, winner of two Tony Awards (Kiss of the Spider Woman; The Rink) and seven additional Tony nominations told DO40 board member and former dance partner George Marcy that she was thrilled to be added to our roster. She recently starred on Broadway in CHITA RIVERA: THE DANCER’S LIFE, a musical celebrating her life and career as one of America’s most beloved stage performers. She appeared in the revival of the musical Nine with Antonio Banderas. In December, 2002 she received the coveted Kennedy Center Honor in Washington, DC. Ms. Rivera created the role of Velma Kelly in the original Broadway production of Chicago opposite Gwen Verdon (1975) and appears in the film version.

MARGE CHAMPION was one half of the "Gower and Marge Champion" dance team. She began dancing as a child under the instruction of her father, Ernest Belcher, who was a noted Hollywood ballet coach. As a teen, she served as the model for the heroine of Disney's feature-length cartoon SNOW WHITE and for the Blue Fairy in PINOCCHIO, and appeared in westerns under the name "Marjorie Bell." She teamed up with actor/choreographer Gower Champion in 1945; they were married in 1947. They went on to appear together in a string of highly popular musical films in the '50s, becoming the screen's most appealing dance team since Astaire and Rogers. After the team quit making films, she went on to be a character actress in a number of movies; also, she created dances for films (The Day of the Locusts, etc.), the stage (Stepping Out, Grover's Corners), and TV. Marge Champion’s work as the choreographer for the TV special QUEEN OF THE STARDUST BALLROOM earned her an Emmy in 1975.

GRACIELA DANIELE danced in the original FOLLIES with first DO40 President Chris Nelson, and performed in many memorable musicals, including the original CHICAGO for Bob Fosse. Her Broadway director/ choreographer credits include MARIE CHRISTINE, ONCE ON THIS ISLAND, ANNIE GET YOUR GUN revival AND DANGEROUS GAME. She choreographed THE GOODBYE GIRL, THE RINK with Liza Minnelli and Chita Rivera and the NYSF production of THE PIRATES OF PENZANCE on Broadway, in Los Angeles and London. She was awarded the 1996 and 1997 FOSSE Award as well as the George, “Mr. Abbott,” Award for Outstanding Achievement by a Director/ Choreographer in 1998.


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