Broadway triple threat legend Gwen Verdon,
The marvelous triple threat and longtime partner/collaborator of Bob Fosse created so many magical moments on television, film and of course Broadway. With a twinkle in her eye, a roll of the shoulder or a tip of a top hat, audiences were mesmerized by her presence in a variety of truly legendary roles including Lola in Damn Yankees, Roxie Hart in Chicago and Charity Hope Valentine in Sweet Charity.
An even wider audience became more familiar with the career of Gwen Verdon with the recent limited FX television series Fosse/Verdon winning Michelle Williams the Golden Globe, Screen Actors Guild and Primetime Emmy Award for portraying Ms. Verdon.
The magnificent Verdon/Fosse Legacy, led by Lloyd Culbreath, Dana Moore, Valarie Pettiford and a number of Bob Fosse musical veterans have kept the glorious history of Bob Fosse and Gwen Verdon's dances alive with daughter Nicole Fosse as the company's Founder and Artistic Director. What an extraordinary opportunity to learn the vocabulary and repertoire of this iconic partnership by dancers who were in the rooms where the dances were created.
This month, Steps on Broadway is holding The Bob Fosse Masterclass Series with the Verdon/Fosse Legacy reconstructeurs now through January 30th.
To celebrate Gwen Verdon's birthday, let's look at the exquisite work the Verdon/Fosse Legacy is doing to preserve this musical theatre history by comparing the original performance with the class/recreation.
"Cool Hand Luke" (The Bob Hope Show, October 1968)
"It's A Fine, Fine Day" (The Ed Sullivan Show, February 1970)
"Dancin' Man" (The Gary Moore Show, June 1962)
"If My Friends Could See Me Now" (Sweet Charity, 1966 Broadway)
"Nowadays" / "Hot Honey Rag" (Chicago, 1975 Broadway)
"Mexican Breakfast" (The Ed Sullivan Show, 1969)
"Who's Got The Pain" (Damn Yankees, 1955 Broadway & 1958 Film)
"I'm A Brass Band" (Sweet Charity, 1966 Broadway)