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Arnold Spohr, Royal Winnipeg Ballet artistic director emeritus and one of the best-loved figures in Canadian dance, died of chronic kidney disease in a Winnipeg long-term care centre early Monday morning. He was 86.

Spohr earned his place in Canada’s cultural pantheon by transforming the Royal Winnipeg Ballet (RWB) from a struggling provincial troupe into a company that won medals, ovations and critical plaudits in major capitals around the world.

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Here is another very informative article about Arnold Spohr and his contribution to Canadian ballet:

Arnold Spohr obituary

Oh my goodness! What sad news.

Arnold Spohr came here to Tucson several years ago. He was actually staying with my neigbbor, George Zoritch (famous dancer of Ballet Russe now gone) and when we were introduced we took immediate liking to each other. He was so very knowledgable about ballet and dancers and so enthusiastic about everything. When I showed him my choreography he was more than excited and gave me wonderful comments. He was writing his biography at the time, which was the main reason he was here in the Southwwest, and for a couple days I showed him around Tucson, which he seemed to love.

He sent me a card afterwards and I so much wanted to reply, but to tell the truth I couldn't make out his return address by his handwriting. So I never heard from him again.

I'm so sorry to hear of his death and that he was in a nursing home for some time prior. He left me a video tape documentary of the history of the Royal Winniped Ballet that I still have and will view again.

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