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The League of Professional Theatre Women Presents Actress and Dancer Carmen de Lavallade


The League of Professional Theatre Women is pleased to present CARMEN DE LAVALLADE, actress, dancer, choreographer, for the next Oral History interview. She will sit down with dance journalist Deborah Jowitt to discuss her large body of work. The event will take place on Monday, June 27, 2016 at 6:00 pm in the Bruno Walter Auditorium of the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts on 65th Street & Amsterdam Avenue. Admission is free, but seats will be on a first-come-first-seated basis.

BettyCorwin, who produces the Oral History series with Pat Addiss and Ludovica Villar-Hauser, is "delighted that Carmen De Lavallade, who has an unparalleled career in dance, theatre film and television, has agreed to be interviewed by Deborah Jowitt, dancer, choreographer and writer, for our next Oral History program on June 27th. Ms De Lavallade, known for her grace and elegance, has performed on the world's greatest stages, has been a dance and theatre treasure for more than six decades and is an inspiration to other artists in the truest sense of the word."

The League has major support from the Edith Meiser Foundation covering interviews with such notables as Billie Allen, Mercedes Ruehl, Tyne Daly, Patti LuPone, Christine Ebersole, Kia Corthron, Donna Murphy, Frances McDormand, and many others. The ongoing Oral History Project chronicles and documents the contributions of significant theatre women in many fields. The interviews are videotaped and preserved for posterity in the Theatre on Film and Tape Archive at the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts at Lincoln Center.

Carmen de Lavallade has had an unparalleled career in dance, theater, film and television beginning in her hometown of Los Angeles performing with the Lester Horton Dance Theater. While in Los Angeles, she appeared in four movies, including Carmen Jones (1954) with Dorothy Dandridge and Odds Against Tomorrow (1959) with Harry Belafonte. She appeared as a dancer in the Broadway production of House of Flowers. Her dance career includes having ballets created for her by Lester Horton, Geoffrey Holder, Alvin Ailey, Glen Tetley, John Butler and Agnes de Mille. She has choreographed for many companies and has had an extensive acting career as a member of the Yale Repertory Theatre and the American Repertory Theatre, performing in numerous Off-Broadway productions. She and her husband, Geoffrey Holder, were the subjects of the film Carmen & Geoffrey (2005), which chronicled their 60-year partnership and artistic legacy. Ms. de Lavallade received the Dance Magazine Award in 1964, an honorary doctorate of Fine Arts from the Juilliard School in 2007, the Duke Ellington Fellowship Award, and the Dance USA Award in 2010. Carmen is the recent recipient of the 2016 Obie Award for Lifetime Achievement. In 1999, she was also named by the Dance Heritage Coalition as one of America's 100 Irreplaceable Dance Treasures. Carmen de Lavallade has been an incomparable dance and theater treasure for more than six decades. In her eighties and still performing with a supreme level of grace and elegance, she is an icon in the truest sense of the word - inspiring generations of artists and audiences.

Deborah Jowitt began to dance professionally in the 1950s and to choreograph in the 1960s. She wrote about dance for The Village Voice from 1967 to 2011 and currently writes for She has published two collections, Dance Beat (1977) and The Dance in Mind (1985), as well as Time and the Dancing Image (1988) and Jerome Robbins: His Life, His Theater, His Dance (2004). Her current project is a critical biography of Martha Graham. Her essays have appeared in numerous journals and anthologies, She lectures and conducts workshops worldwide and teaches in the Dance Department of New York University's Tisch School of the Arts.

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