Gwen Verdon in solo Stage dance performance On the Riviera, 1951
On the Riviera, 1951 starring Danny Kaye, Gene Tierney, Corinne Calvet, and Gwen Verdon. 89 min.
Though unbilled in the main credits, Cole protégée Gwen Verdon features prominently in this dance-rich Fox Technicolor movie, as she leads nominal star Danny Kaye on a world-dance tour that includes Cole’s signature version of Hindu jazz in “Rhythm of a New Romance.” Cole’s dark side surfaces in the creepy, pseudo-whimsical “Popo the Puppet.” As Busby Berkeley had done 20 years earlier, Cole completely commandeers the mise en scène from the mediocre director of record for an amazing finale, aptly titled “Happy Ending.”
Gwen Verdon & Danny Kaye in On the Riviera, 1951
The choreographer Jack Cole (American, 1911–1974) stands as one of the most influential figures in 20th-century dance. Gathering elements from ballet, ethnic and popular dance styles, and the avant-garde, Cole was a principal figure in the formation of “theatrical jazz,” the idiom that has dominated American stage and screen performance since the 1950s. Among the many choreographers his work has influenced are Jerome Robbins, Gower Champion, Alvin Ailey and, perhaps most conspicuously, Bob Fosse, who not only employed Cole’s distinctively angular movement and ironic show-biz references, but also married Cole’s longtime assistant Gwen Verdon.
The Museum of Modern Art, Theater 2
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New York, NY 10019
“Popo the Puppet” stage dance number featuring Gwen Verdon & Danny Kaye in
On the Riviera, 1951
“POPO THE PUPPET” Stage DANCE NUMBER FEATURING GWEN VERDON & DANNY KAYE IN
ON THE RIVIERA, 1951
Hindu jazz “Rhythm of a New Romance” stage DANCE NUMBER FEATURING GWEN VERDON & DANNY KAYE IN ON THE RIVIERA, 1951