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ballet dancers in television roles


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#1 Mme. Hermine

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Posted 13 September 2002 - 05:01 AM

i started to put this with the movies thread and thought that it might be too unwieldy so i'll put it here, thinking of all the times we've seen dancers in roles on tv series as themselves or in story lines (as opposed to showing a ballet film on tv by itself. the first that comes to my mind is this one:
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i was doing class at dokoudovsky's school in new york at the time and we specifically asked him about this; evidently he'd given permission for them to use his name! (i seem to have the impression that someone connected with the series took class at his school and thought it would be a lark, i also think the character is the one that is murdered).
*************************************.
"Hart to Hart"

HARTS ON THEIR TOES 3/ 9/82

A visiting ballet dancer wants to defect because he is in love
with a ballerina who is not Russian. Complicating his situation
is the murder of his rival.
Ballet consultant Howard Jeffrey
Yuri Rostoff....................Victor Barbee
Zabin...........................Clive Revill
Michelle Barrie.................Anna Rodzianko
Christopher Hawks...............Xander Berkeley
Federal Investigator............Gerald Gordon
Boris Lermontov.................Alexander Minz
Policeman.......................James Jeter
Marty...........................Alexander Lockwood
Vladimir Dokovdovsky............Mark Bratcher

#2 Mme. Hermine

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Posted 13 September 2002 - 05:05 AM

and this classic, from "the odd couple"
**********************************
Last Tango in Newark
Felix and Oscar become involved with Edward Villella, premier danseur of the New York City Ballet, when he volunteers to play a role in the classic ballet "Swan Lake" performed by a class of young girls.

#3 Mme. Hermine

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Posted 13 September 2002 - 05:18 AM

oh shucks here's another one: about a dancer tho not i think starring one: ballet in 'Bonanza", believe it or not:
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Paul Mandel in The Ballerina, episode aired January 24, 1965 (season 6); written by Frank Chase, directed by Don McDougall
The plot: A young girl meets a former ballet dancer on the Ponderosa who helps her realise her dream to become a ballerina.

#4 Mme. Hermine

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Posted 13 September 2002 - 05:27 AM

and as a parting shot this morning:
**********************************
From "The Monkees" (really!)
Card Carrying Red Shoes
Original Airdate - 11/06/67
Writer: Lee Sanford
Director: James Frawley
Three of the Monkees (Mike is missing) are hired to play for the Druvanian ballet. They are promptly fired when they cannot play the weird Druvanian instruments. A Ballerina, who wishes to defect, smuggles herself out in their trunk. When they find her she falls for Peter. What she and the Monkees don't know is that she has microfilm hidden in the toe of her ballet slipper. The Druvanians kidnap Peter to force the Ballerina to return.

#5 Alexandra

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Posted 13 September 2002 - 06:10 AM

Thank you for those, Pmeja! I can think of three more, but I don't have the reference information -- just from memory.

Victor Barbee was also in a Murder She Wrote. He was a defecting Russian; that's all I can remember.

I can't even remember the name of the show, but the master from "The Karate Kid" had a TV series for a short while, and there was a dancer who, doing her barre in the park (where else?) saw a murder. They knew they'd been spotted and pursued her. But never fear. She felled them with one hell of a grand battement.

And there was an escaping ballerina episode on Starsky and Hutch. She fell in love with one of them -- I'd never seen the show before this, so I never knew which one.

And there's the famous Gelsey Kirkland on L.A. Law episode.

#6 Mme. Hermine

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Posted 13 September 2002 - 08:55 AM

Murder She Wrote had at least two episodes that had ballet as a subject, found these in an episode index.
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Episode # 9
Dec. 16--Death Takes a Curtain Call
Guests: Dane Clark, William Conrad, Read Morgan
Synopsis: A special night at the ballet turns grisly when Jessica encounters murder.

Episode # 163
Jan. 05--Danse Diabolique
Guests: Adrian Paul, Marisa Berenson
Synopsis: Jessica is convinced that a ballerina who died during her premiere performance in a new ballet was actually murdered.

#7 dirac

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Posted 13 September 2002 - 09:41 AM

Suzanne Farrell was on "Sesame Street", and "The Odd Couple." And let us not forget Nureyev's partnership with Miss Piggy on "The Muppet Show" in "Swan Lake" and a memorable rendition of "Baby, It's Cold Outside."


This was hundreds of years ago, :) but I recall Wayne Sleep appearing on John Curry's first special, doing a funny impression of Curry on the ice.

#8 Manhattnik

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Posted 13 September 2002 - 10:39 AM

Jessica is convinced that a ballerina who died during her premiere performance in a new ballet was actually murdered.

Casting suggestions, anyone?

#9 Alexandra

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Posted 13 September 2002 - 10:44 AM

THAT idea conjures up the wonderful Baron Von Stroganoff novels. In one of them The Man Who Was No Nijinsky is done away with by the fourth-cast Petrushka NOT, he insists as he is dragged away, because he wanted to dance the part. No! No! But because Nos. 2 and 3 were so AWFUL.

They don't make 'em like that any more. Sigh.

#10 Mme. Hermine

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Posted 13 September 2002 - 11:38 AM

don't suppose that "Man's" first name was Heezno? ;)

#11 Calliope

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Posted 13 September 2002 - 11:48 AM

There was a GET SMART episode around a ballet dancer too....

#12 Mel Johnson

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Posted 13 September 2002 - 11:52 AM

And there was a Ben Casey episode based on a defecting ballerina's story, starring Susan Oliver.

#13 Alexandra

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Posted 13 September 2002 - 11:56 AM

pmeja, that character was definitely an ancestor in the Heezno line :) They're very funny books, the von Stroganoff books; behind the scenes stories about an absolutely whacko Ballets Russes-type company.

#14 Mme. Hermine

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Posted 13 September 2002 - 12:00 PM

hmmm. then there's that classic BEVERLY HILLBILLIES episode of December 1964, in which Mrs. Drysdale tries to enlist Jed Clampett's help with the struggling Beverly Hills Ballet and which lists in the cast:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

82. The Ballet
gs: Leon Belasco (Victor Gregory) Roy Fitzell (dancer #1) Barrie Duffus (dancer #2) Diane Reese (dancer #3) Kim Condon (dancer #4) Consuela Moran (dancer #5) Lavra Lamb (dancer #6)

#15 Mme. Hermine

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Posted 13 September 2002 - 12:01 PM

alexandra, do you know who wrote those books? (they sound like a great guilty read!)


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