Villella, Edward

1967 TLS by the foremost 20th century American-born ballet dancer

Price: $10.00

Description:
(b. 1936) New York-born danseur and choreographer, one of America's most celebrated 20th century male dancers of ballet. Villella enrolled in the School of American Ballet at 10, but interrupted his studies to complete his college education. He attended the New York Maritime Academy, where he lettered in baseball and was a championship boxer. He graduated with a marine science degree in 1959, and rejoined the School of American Ballet. Villella was a member of the New York City Ballet in 1957-81, rising to soloist in 1958 and principal dancer in 1960. He was noted for his powerful technique, particularly his soaring leaps and jumps. Among his most noteworthy performances were Oberon in George Balanchine's ballet “A Midsummer Night's Dream”, “Tarantella”, Rubies in the Balanchine ballet “Jewels”, and “Prodigal Son”. He was the first American male dancer to appear with the Royal Danish Ballet, and the only American ever asked to dance an encore at the Bolshoi Theatre in Moscow. He danced at the inaugural for President Kennedy, and performed for Presidents Johnson, Nixon, and Ford. He won an Emmy Award in 1975 for his CBS television production of Harlequinade. He danced in 2 television versions of “The Nutcracker” (in different roles), in a ballet film version of “A Midsummer Night's Dream”, and in a 1966 TV production of “Brigadoon”, in which he played the tragic suitor Harry Beaton. During the 1960s he and his dancing partner Patricia McBride appeared often on The Ed Sullivan Show. After retirement as a performer, he was the artistic coordinator of the Eglevsky Ballet 1979-84 and director of Ballet Oklahoma (now Oklahoma City Ballet) 1983-85. He has also been artistic advisor to New Jersey Ballet since 1972 and currently is a special artist at New Jersey School of Ballet. He founded the Miami City Ballet in 1985 and served as its director until 2012.In 1997, he was named a Kennedy Center Honors recipient, and was awarded the National Medal of Arts by President Clinton. TLS on 10 ½ x 7 ¼ grey paper while principal dancer with the New York City Ballet, Jule 1 1967, no place, to a Rhode Island collector. Villella appreciates his letter, is happy he and wife like Villella’s television performances, enjoyed their little tale, sends requested photograph (not present).

Condition: Very good
Type:Letter






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