Capezio Celebrates 130 Years Of Excellence Dance Award Honorees

The Smith Center for the Performing Arts in Las Vegas Capezio Dance Foundation presents: Capezio celebrates 130 years of excellence in a one-night only special Awards and show on Monday, May 14, 2018 at 7:30 pm at The Smith Center for the Performing Arts, 361 Symphony Park Avenue, Las Vegas NV 89106. A glorious production will highlight some of the magical history of Capezio with numerous dance legends and stars of stage and screen saluting this milestone. The show is produced and directed by Ann Marie DeAngelo. The show benefts The Actors Fund and Future Dance (a program sponsored by Nevada Ballet Theatre). This is the first time that the Capezio Dance Awards are being presented to receipients of various dance genres.

The Capezio Dance Foundation World of Dance Award Honorees: Debbie Allen: for Life Achievement as a dancer, actress, choreographer, director, teacher and producer. Wendy Whelan: for Ballet as NYCB principal ballerina, and current programs promoting emerging choreographers. David Parsons: for choreography as a world-renown Modern dance choreographer. Michelle Dorrance: for Tap as an exceptional dancer and innovative choreographer. Steve "Mr. Wiggles" Clemente: the first Capezio Award in the genre of Hip Hop to one of its foremost leading pioneers as a dancer, inventor, choreographer, and teacher.

The Icon of Dance Salvatore Capezio was born in Muro Lucano, Italy. In 1887, at the age of seventeen, he opened his shop near the old Metropolitan Opera House in New York City. The sign above his door read: "The Theatrical & Historical Shoemaker." He began his business by repairing theatrical shoes for the Met. On the day he created an emergency pair of shoes for Jean De Reszke, Salvatore quickly made the transition from cobbler to shoemaker. He discovered dance shoes, pointe shoes in particular, to be a challenging balance between delicate construction and complex engineering. In turn, his customers discovered that few were as determined as Capezio to take on that challenge.

Soon the shop became a meeting place for dancers who would stop by to discuss their needs and pick up a pair of his shoes. One dancer in particular, Angelina Passone, a graduate of La Scala, lingered over the discussion of her shoes and later became his wife. As his popularity grew, dancers from around the world made it a point to visit. In fact, Anna Pavlova purchased Capezio pointe shoes for herself and her entire company during her first tour of the U.S. Her generous praise of his work ensured Salvatore's success.

Eventually, he entrusted his superior shoemaking techniques to his family. They joined him in the business and the exceptional reputation of Capezio continued to spread. By the 1930s his products were dancing across Broadway in the Ziegfeld Follies and in dozens of other musicals. In 1941, Claire McCardell showed the Capezio long-sole ballet shoe with her fashion collection. The enthusiastic response provoked Lord & Taylor, Neiman Marcus and other major stores to purchase and promote the footwear. This trend became so strong that in 1949 Capezio made the cover of Vogue.

In 1952, Capezio received the Coty Award, fashion's highest accolade. ?An eye for innovative products and the camaraderie he shared with dancers were the key to the success of Capezio. In this spirit, The Capezio Dance Award was established in 1952 to honor those who make a long-standing, significant contribution to dance. The Capezio Foundation was established in 1953 to promote and recognize ongoing achievements in dance.

Plenty of the world's greatest performers have recognized Capezio as the only way to dance: Fred Astaire, Lady Gaga, Gene Kelly, Madonna, Bob Fosse, Mick Jagger, Liza Minelli, Sammy Davis Jr., Justin Timberlake, Anna Pavlova, Charles "Honi" Coles, Gwen Stefani, Alicia Alonso, Gregory Hines, Tommy Tune, Ann Reinking, Debbie Allen, Ben Vereen, Charo, Rob Marshall, Fatima, Savion Glover, and Britney Spears.?Now third and fourth generation family members resolutely continue the legacy of craft, innovation and commitment. ?With prevalent industry use of computerization and robotics, Capezio Special Make-up Department still hand crafts footwear for an eclectic mix of performers.

Some of the noteworthy present and past casts include the current acclaimed Hello, Dolly!, WickedI, The Lion King, Chicago, the recent Cats (revival), Mamma Mia, Memphis, Billy Elliot, A Chorus Line, The Addams Family, La Cage Aux Folles, The Rockettes, Disney and Ringling Brothers, Barnum & Bailey Circus and many others.

Capezio products have been featured in television and films such as "So You Think You Can Dance," "Dancing with the Stars," MTV's "Made," "Burlesque", "BLACK SWAN," and "Chicago," to only name a few. The dedication of Capezio to providing dancers with technologically advanced, quality tools for their art continues to inspire innovations. Capezio proudly introduced revolutionary footwear to the industry with the Dansneaker, footUndeez, tap shoes with Tele Tone taps and the Rayow system, the Pedini styles, the acclaimed FizzionTM and several favorites made with PowerPointe Construction. Capezio regards dance as an art form, a lifestyle and an attitude. Capezio is more committed to dance now more than ever!


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