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George Zoritch: a dancer to remember.Current News of the Zoritch estate


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#1 Richka

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Posted 30 April 2011 - 07:36 AM

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George Zoritch, who died in 2009 at the age of 92, was premier danseur of the Ballet Russe and other ballet companies, Broadway musicals and Hollywood films.
Since his death, his house, which had been on probate for a year has been remodled and is currently for sale. His furniture was put on auction.
During his lifetime Zoritch collected a vast amount of memorabilia of the ballet world including autographed pictures and paintings by mostly all of the famous dancers of his generation as well as contemporary. He knew them all! During his latter years he made regular journeys from his home in Tucson, Arizona to Perm, Russia and the estate of Serge Diaghilev, to judge ballet competitions along with Yuri Grigorovitch, Vladimir Vasiliev and other great dancers and choreographers of the Bolshoi and Maryinsky theaters.
His collection also includes statues, the Nijinsky and Diaghilev awards and many other artifacts and mementos.
The entire collection has been given to Kaatsbaan; a dance center in upState New York where it is my understanding they will eventually be put on exhibition.
I have been a friend and neighbor of Mr. Zoritch since retiring here to Tucson, but as a boy I knew him from his movies.
Richard Holden

#2 ViolinConcerto

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Posted 30 April 2011 - 11:15 AM

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George Zoritch, who died in 2009 at the age of 92, was premier danseur of the Ballet Russe and other ballet companies, Broadway musicals and Hollywood films.
Since his death, his house, which had been on probate for a year has been remodled and is currently for sale. His furniture was put on auction.
During his lifetime Zoritch collected a vast amount of memorabilia of the ballet world including autographed pictures and paintings by mostly all of the famous dancers of his generation as well as contemporary. He knew them all! During his latter years he made regular journeys from his home in Tucson, Arizona to Perm, Russia and the estate of Serge Diaghilev, to judge ballet competitions along with Yuri Grigorovitch, Vladimir Vasiliev and other great dancers and choreographers of the Bolshoi and Maryinsky theaters.
His collection also includes statues, the Nijinsky and Diaghilev awards and many other artifacts and mementos.
The entire collection has been given to Kaatsbaan; a dance center in upState New York where it is my understanding they will eventually be put on exhibition.
I have been a friend and neighbor of Mr. Zoritch since retiring here to Tucson, but as a boy I knew him from his movies.
Richard Holden



KAATSBAAN is the perfect place for these items!!! Thank you for the heads up!

#3 Bonnette

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Posted 30 April 2011 - 12:11 PM

What a privilege it must have been to know Mr. Zoritch! I am glad that the collection has been donated to this dance-related group.

#4 cubanmiamiboy

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Posted 01 May 2011 - 06:46 AM

Thanks for telling us about it, Richka. Could you tell us more about Mir. Zoritch...? He belongs to that particular group of dancers from BRdMC that didn't seem to have tried to get into BT or NYCB when those companies were born, and so it is kind of hard to track his career from the currently existing autobiographies of other dancers. I've been tempted several times to buy his book, but I think the only time I saw it on Ebay-(or Amazon?)-it was too expensive, so I'm waiting for the chance to come up. Meanwhile, tell us about him, Richka! :flowers:

If anything, he's placed within my top three picks of the most beautiful male dancers list. :clapping:

#5 Arizona Native

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Posted 01 May 2011 - 07:55 AM

You're in good company, CubanMiamiBoy. When I was a student at the University of Arizona, I took class from Mr. Zoritch, so when doing some ballet history research, his name naturally caught my eye. While he was dancing he was called "The Most Beautiful Man in the World."

#6 cubanmiamiboy

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Posted 01 May 2011 - 08:00 AM

You're in good company, CubanMiamiBoy. When I was a student at the University of Arizona, I took class from Mr. Zoritch, so when doing some ballet history research, his name naturally caught my eye. While he was dancing he was called "The Most Beautiful Man in the World."


http://farm5.static...._a0e4679f09.jpg :wub:

#7 ViolinConcerto

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Posted 01 May 2011 - 05:43 PM

In the film "Ballets Russes," the first shot of Maria Tallchief shows her rolling her eyes saying (something like) "George Zoritch, Oh, George Zoritch, oh he was just the handsomest man ever!.... "

#8 Richka

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Posted 07 May 2011 - 02:36 PM

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George Zoritch, who died in 2009 at the age of 92, was premier danseur of the Ballet Russe and other ballet companies, Broadway musicals and Hollywood films.
Since his death, his house, which had been on probate for a year has been remodled and is currently for sale. His furniture was put on auction.
During his lifetime Zoritch collected a vast amount of memorabilia of the ballet world including autographed pictures and paintings by mostly all of the famous dancers of his generation as well as contemporary. He knew them all! During his latter years he made regular journeys from his home in Tucson, Arizona to Perm, Russia and the estate of Serge Diaghilev, to judge ballet competitions along with Yuri Grigorovitch, Vladimir Vasiliev and other great dancers and choreographers of the Bolshoi and Maryinsky theaters.
His collection also includes statues, the Nijinsky and Diaghilev awards and many other artifacts and mementos.
The entire collection has been given to Kaatsbaan; a dance center in upState New York where it is my understanding they will eventually be put on exhibition.
I have been a friend and neighbor of Mr. Zoritch since retiring here to Tucson, but as a boy I knew him from his movies.
Richard Holden


May 7th, 2011. Not too sure I'm doing this right but several have asked for more about George Zoritch. I thought I had started a blog here but appears I can only add to it by 'reply'. If someone can help with how this should be done better, I'm all ears.
Anyway, this is a START.
Briefly, when I moved to Tucson, Arizona in 1987 who should I find living here but George. Of course I knew him by reputation and saw him in movies when I was a lad of 14. In fact he was my original inspiration to begin to learn dancing. He was the very first male ballet dancer I had ever seen, if only on film. I never saw him on the stage.
I soon became acquainted with him because he was in a ballet class that I did every morning. He had retired from teaching at the University of Arizona here. He would only do the barre in that class, then leave. I think he was in his early 70s then. He was also a member of my health club and lifted weights and used the machines. (The film "Ballets Russes") has clips of him doing this).
Because I am Russian speaking (to a degree) we became friends. As my house is in same neighborhood I visited him very often and stopped by usually on Sunday mornings on my way to church to drop off my dog SONYA until I returned. He would always have tea an pastries ready. He would also take care of SONYA while I was out of town. He LOVED Sonya and Sonya loved him ..... I think more than she loved me. Pets appear to take you for granted don't they. He had a little dog, Sammy, who was always glad to see Sonya. Sonya felt right at home in George's house and would jump on his lap to sit.
We went to Las Vegas together once and saw a show. Also the Nevada Dance company, led by his friend Vassily Sulich. Long story later about a special dining event at the Tropicana Hotel.
Yuri (his nickname in Russian) or Yurochka, told me many stories of his days with the Ballet Russe and those he danced with and partnered. I have tales about that, as they relate to him. I can go into those later if anyone is interested. He was starting to write his book "Ballet Mystique" about that time but his skills at the computer were, let's say, limited. I helped him choose photos for the book, or at least offered my opinion of what to use. In the end of course they were his own choice. The Russian edition of his book has many more photos, some in color. That edition is doing very well in Russia so I am told. I have a box full of the American edition.
I'll leave this for now with one memory; about "Le Spectre de la Rose". He was always telling and showing me how it should be done, especially the arms which he felt were done all wrong today. Also about the costume with one shoulder bare.
He made regular trips to Perm, Russia to judge competitions. Funny story about when he returned in middle of night but had forgotten key to his house and slept in the garden of his neighbor until sunrise. He was then in his late 80s.
Perhaps this is enough for now. More later, and about Kaatsbaan in upstate New York, where his collection was given. Comments are welcome and will let me know if I should continue this or not, and if it's in the right place and mode.

#9 cubanmiamiboy

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Posted 07 May 2011 - 02:56 PM

Funny story about when he returned in middle of night but had forgotten key to his house and slept in the garden of his neighbor until sunrise. He was then in his late 80s.


:P

Comments are welcome and will let me know if I should continue this or not, and if it's in the right place and mode.


Count me among the interested ones! I LOVE stories of those stars from the past, so keep'em coming...! :wub:

#10 Richka

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Posted 07 May 2011 - 03:46 PM

Yes i will be glad to continue. I'm full of stories but wanted to know if I'm doing it right and in the right place. Not sure if 'reply' is correct mode for this. I suppose I should really know more about Ballet Alert before even thinking of adding things but it's a tremendous site to take in and one can just get lost unless an administrator like you who knows way around.

#11 cubanmiamiboy

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Posted 07 May 2011 - 07:37 PM

... one can just get lost unless an administrator like you who knows way around.


Oh, I'm not a mod, Richka, but thanks for the flattering assumption...! :P

#12 diane

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Posted 08 May 2011 - 12:05 AM

Oh, I would also LOVE to read more of your recollections!

Thank you for taking the time to write them here!

-d-

#13 Bonnette

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Posted 08 May 2011 - 06:35 AM

Oh, I would also LOVE to read more of your recollections!

Thank you for taking the time to write them here!

Same here, these are so enjoyable.

#14 Richka

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Posted 09 May 2011 - 11:07 AM


Oh, I would also LOVE to read more of your recollections!

Thank you for taking the time to write them here!

Same here, these are so enjoyable.


Thanks so much.I have MANY more memories of Yuri on the ready as the plan was to do a series, but first I must know more about how to do it. I'm not sure I'm going about it in correct way, meaning; isn't it supposed to be a blog and not a 'reply'? Or is it supposed to be in form of a FORUM? Can't seem to find out from anyone and I don't have time to take up a total STUDY of the workings of BalletTalk or Ballet Alert, because it's such a VAST site with so many avenues. BTW, it's even difficult to get into it as there are several Ballet Alerts online to choose to get right one.

#15 Bonnette

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Posted 09 May 2011 - 11:28 AM

isn't it supposed to be a blog and not a 'reply'?

Hi Richka, here are the instructions on how to set up a Ballet Alert blog. I think your recollections would make a lovely blog.


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