Remembering Zizi Jeanmaire, French Ballerina and Film Star

French ballerina Zizi Jeanmaire died peacefully at her Swiss home on July 17 at the age of 96, reported Valentine Petit, Jeanmaire’s daughter with choreographer Roland Petit (1924-2011). One of the French dance world’s most iconic personalities, Jeanmaire was a trailblazer. A list of her numerous collaborators reads like a long “Who’s Who” of the […]

Martha Graham Dancer Helen Gray McGehee, 98, Dies

Helen Gray McGehee Umaña passed away peacefully on April 9, 2020. Born in Lynchburg, Virginia on May 10, 1921, McGehee graduated from Randolph-Macon Woman’s College in 1942 with a major in Latin and Greek. A member of Phi Beta Kappa, McGehee found her calling and her talent for modern dance while in college. After doing […]

Remembering Blondell Cummings (1944–2015)

A dancer/choreographer who crossed over from modern to postmodern, from the black dance community to the avant-garde community, Blondell Cummings was a riveting presence onstage and a steadying presence offstage. She died of pancreatic cancer last Sunday, Aug. 30. Cummings grew up in Harlem; she attended NYU and studied at the Martha Graham School of […]