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George Zoritch


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#1 Gina Ness

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Posted 02 November 2009 - 03:04 PM

I just received a phone call from a dear friend who stars in the Ballet Russe film. He told me he received a call today letting him know that George Zoritch has passed away. I can't find anything when I google Mr. Zoritch. Perhaps the information is too new? Perhaps it is erroneous? Anyway, if anyone has any information, let us all know...

#2 cubanmiamiboy

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Posted 02 November 2009 - 03:23 PM

Certainly one of the most handsome male dancers ever...
http://www.georgezor...es/Florence.jpg

This are sad news...the old troupe is shrinking more and more...
RIP, Mr. Zoritch...

#3 Gina Ness

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Posted 02 November 2009 - 03:28 PM

Yes...I hope someone will substantiate this soon...That is exactly what my friend said, cubanmiamiboy... The old troupe is shrinking...

#4 leonid17

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Posted 02 November 2009 - 03:52 PM

Yes...I hope someone will substantiate this soon...That is exactly what my friend said, cubanmiamiboy... The old troupe is shrinking...


I have heard he died Sunday November 1, in a Tucson hospital aged 92.

#5 LiLing

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Posted 02 November 2009 - 06:02 PM

While performing at U of A on tour some of us took his classes. My memory is of a real gentleman of the old school, and a fine teacher. May he RIP

#6 richard53dog

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Posted 02 November 2009 - 06:14 PM

While performing at U of A on tour some of us took his classes. My memory is of a real gentleman of the old school, and a fine teacher. May he RIP



My only exposure to Zoritch was on the film of the two Ballet Russes companies in the 30s, 40s, etc. And he came across to me as a real charming man, lots of charisma.

#7 glebb

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Posted 02 November 2009 - 06:24 PM

I'll will always be grateful to George Zoritch because he wore that 80s Joffrey t-shirt in the Ballets Russes film. If not for that t-shirt the film would have been completely devoid of any mention of Robert Joffrey, the man who was responsible for so much Ballets Russes interest in the U.S.

#8 cubanmiamiboy

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Posted 02 November 2009 - 08:05 PM

The film sequence in which he tries to rehearse a fragment of Giselle with a humorous Krassovska-(she ordering him to do the steps and both shouting in Russian while laughing at Zoritch's claim of being "too old" to run after her)- is just priceless... :flowers: . Later on there is a moment of great tenderness when both share a kiss in the lips... :thumbsup:

I'm sure atm711 got to see his dancing at some point...Would love to hear about it.

#9 Gina Ness

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Posted 02 November 2009 - 08:48 PM

I absolutely love that sequence, too! It is one of my favorite moments in the entire Ballet Russe film... :thumbsup:

#10 Mme. Hermine

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Posted 03 November 2009 - 01:50 AM

http://www.azstarnet.com/metro/315926

:wink:









#11 Richka

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Posted 03 November 2009 - 07:01 AM

I just received a phone call from a dear friend who stars in the Ballet Russe film. He told me he received a call today letting him know that George Zoritch has passed away. I can't find anything when I google Mr. Zoritch. Perhaps the information is too new? Perhaps it is erroneous? Anyway, if anyone has any information, let us all know...


Yes, it's true. George Zoritch died Sunday, November 1st at 10 PM in Tucson's St. Mary's Hospital.
He had been there for 3 weeks after taking a fall in his house and injured his head and neck.
I have been a close friend since I moved to Tucson in 1987 and live close to his house in the Tucson Mountains. I visited him nearly every day at the hospital and sometimes fed him. His head was encased in a halo in order to try and heal his neck. He died with it still on.
The Sunday morning I visited on my way to a matinee performance of Giselle by the Tucson Ballet. The hospital was very quiet. His caregiver was not there. George had definately taken a change for the worse. He was unable to sit up and spoke almost in a whisper. I had to lean close to hear him. I felt he was dying. His last words to me were "Goodbye Richard" as I left for the ballet.
During the ballet "Giselle" (staged and coached by Amanda McKerrow) I felt that, unknown to the dancers, that I would never see George alive again and this "Giselle" could have been an unknown tribute to him, as he had danced Albrecht many times in his life. It came to be true as I was later to find out.
A month earlier he had given me his entire collection of video tapes of about 400. Of course I have not seen any of them yet, but among them are recordings of his classes and students of his while he was on the faculty of the University of Arizona. I am not yet prepared to look at them.
George was my original inspiration to dance. I had never seen him on the stage in his glory days with Ballet Russe of course but only in films. "Night And Day" and "Escape Me Never" are two that I saw as a teenager and they were the first chance I got to see ballet at all, least of all a male ballet dancer.
Perhaps I could relate here that at that time, as a 16 year old, I was an usher at the Metropolitan Movie Palace in Boston (now the Wang Center) and every time the ballet in "Escape Me Never" came on I would rush to the bottom of an aisle to watch as closely as I could. That's when I started lessons and to practice dance steps unseen, whenever I could find an isolated spot in that immense theater.
So George had a great influence on my life, and little did I know at that time that we would one day be close neighbors in Tucson.
At age 72, George was still doing class barre in local ballet studios and at 82, doing gym at the local YMCA. Then he began writing his book of memories "Ballet Mystique". He then translated it into a Russian edition which he told me is selling very well in Russia. He had been going every other year to Perm, Russia (the home of Serge Diaghileff) to attend ballet competitons there. He was actually planning on going this spring. The Abaturovs, who direct this competition at the beautiful theater there, were visiting George on the day he fell.
ВЕЧНАЯ ПAМЯТЪ (Eternal Memory)

#12 Gina Ness

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Posted 03 November 2009 - 10:12 AM

Thank you so much, Richka, for sharing this with us. Mr. Zoritch was very fortunate that you were his friend. May he rest in peace...

#13 Nanarina

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Posted 03 November 2009 - 10:29 AM

The film sequence in which he tries to rehearse a fragment of Giselle with a humorous Krassovska-(she ordering him to do the steps and both shouting in Russian while laughing at Zoritch's claim of being "too old" to run after her)- is just priceless... :bow: . Later on there is a moment of great tenderness when both share a kiss in the lips... :wink:

I'm sure atm711 got to see his dancing at some point...Would love to hear about it.




This was a wonderful DVD, which I still watch, the history one learns from it is amazing. Such wonderful people giving you an insight into a famous era. It is so sad to see them gradually disappear from our lives. God bless them, and may they perform forever on the big stage in the sky.

#14 leonid17

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Posted 03 November 2009 - 10:55 AM

Richka

Thank you for your touching post about Mr Zoritch.

Christian gave a link to a photograph of Mr Zoritch and I thought some might like to look at the full George Zoritch website. http://www.georgezor....com/frame.html

ADDED

There is an obituary at http://www.azstarnet...etro/315926.php

The photograph of Mr Zoritch posted above was taken by Leonid Massine.

#15 dancer100

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Posted 05 November 2009 - 09:12 PM

George Zortich was one of my most beloved dancers of the Ballet Russe.
My heart broke when I saw his obituary in the Times. Just recently he autographed a photograph of himself for me and signed it "With admiration and love, George Zoritch". I do not deserve his admiration in perspective of all of his contributions to the world of ballet.

Here is the link to his obituary from the New York Times: http://www.nytimes.c...ance/index.html

May he rest in peace.

Je ne vous oublierai jamais, mon George.


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