“The most touching moment occurred when [Bob Fosse and Gwen Verdon’s] grandson, Noah Fosse, who admitted to never getting to meet his grandfather, recalled his grandmother as being his “best friend” and–as a senior citizen–still building forts by toppling the couches in the living room. Thank goodness for (their daughter) Nicole and Noah who continue to honor and promote the Verdon Fosse Legacy! In a titillating trio that displayed exactly why Bob Fosse has maintained such an exalted status, the star of the FX series Fosse/Verdon who played Chita Rivera–Bianca Pamela Marroquin–along with the slinky, sexy dance studs Nicholas de la Vega and Nicholas Sipes, performed the number “I Gotcha” from Liza With a Z that garnered Fosse awards and recognition in his landmark year, 1972. The scintillating threesome brought sizzle to the evening with their red-hot presentation. With her swinging ponytail, long legs, knocked knees and quirky attitude, Marroquin channeled Minelli on stage as flawlessly as she did Rivera on the screen. Mimi Quillin, who worked with Fosse and Verdon, reconstructed the smokin’ dance from a video, which the talented dancers adapted to in almost no time. The two Nicks referred to one of the most thrilling, iconic and challenging signature Fosse moves–the scoot–where they crawl across the stage, stiff upper body, shuffling feet and bent knees (a bit like Voguing but more painful) as “the thigh burner.”
The Verdon Fosse Legacy was honored to partake in the 4th annual Dancers for Good benefit concert in support of The Actors Fund. The event, held at Guild Hall in East Hampton, was hosted by Cady Huffman (Bob Fosse’s BIG DEAL) and honored Bob Fosse and Gwen Verdon for their Lifetime Achievement. Their middle grandson, Noah Fosse, accepted the honor on behalf of the Verdon Fosse Legacy. The Legacy also closed the show with a performance of “I Gotcha,” the fun and funky trio from Bob Fosse’s Emmy-winning “Liza with a Z” (1972). Mimi Quillin reconstructed the piece which starred Bianca Marroquin (Chita Rivera in FX’s “Fosse Verdon), Nicolas de la Vega, and Nicholas Sipes. It was a magical evening filled with incredible dancing for an incredible cause. For more information about Dancers for Good, visit www.dancersforgood.org.
Mimi Quillin (who served as dance captain and assistant to Bob Fosse and Gwen Verdon for the 1986 Broadway revival of SWEET CHARITY) reconstructed “If My Friends Could See Me Now” for Broadway Backwards last Monday. The 13th annual edition of the show, which celebrates the LGBTQ community through gender-reversed renditions of beloved showtunes, raised an incredible $680,273 to benefit Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS and The Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual & Transgender Community Center in New York City. The show was produced by Broadway Cares.
“When On the Town’s Jay Armstrong Johnson unexpectedly found himself in the apartment of Tony Award winner John Glover, Johnson excitedly launched into “If My Friends Could See Me Now” from Sweet Charity. Johnson impressively performed the original, iconic Bob Fosse choreography, recreated for Johnson by Mimi Quillin.”—BC/EFA
For more information on Broadway Backwards and all of the wonderful events and programs of BC/EFA, visit www.broadwaycares.org.
*Photos by Johnathan Tichler
Last month Mimi Quillin visited Milan, Italy and was welcomed to teach at the Centro Danzaricerca. The studio, owned and operated by Agnese Riccatelli, was founded over thirty years ago and their students are currently in the finals of “Italy’s Got Talent.” Mimi taught the Bob Fosse’s iconic “Rich Man’s Frug” from SWEET CHARITY, for which she served as dance captain and assistant to Bob and Gwen for the 1986 Broadway revival.
Through the Bob Fosse Master Class Series, Legacy-sanctioned reconstructeurs teach style, technique, and work ethic to students at dance studios and colleges across the United States and the world. Our goal is to reconstruct—rather than revive, restage, or re-imagine—Bob Fosse’s choreography with the original intent and integrity.
This month, we’re honoring four of the Legacy’s core reconstructeurs: Lloyd Culbreath, Dana Moore, Valarie Pettiford, and Mimi Quillin.
Lloyd Culbreath Broadway/national tour credits include DANCIN’, SOPHISTICATED LADIES, THE TAP DANCE KID, BIG DEAL, SWEET CHARITY, HONKY TONK NIGHTS, KISS OF THE SPIDER WOMAN, GUYS AND DOLLS, ANYTHING GOES, ON THE TOWN (Assistant Choreographer), MAN OF LA MANCHA (Assistant Choreographer), CHICAGO (Dance Captain) and CHITA RIVERA: THE DANCER’S LIFE. Lloyd teaches at the June Claire Dance Center of Long Island.
Dana Moore Broadway/national tour credits include A CHORUS LINE, SWEET CHARITY, DANCIN’, ON YOUR TOES, THE WILL ROGERS FOLLIES, HOW TO SUCCEED…, SINGIN’ IN THE RAIN, DANGEROUS GAMES, SUGAR BABIES, COPPERFIELD, CHICAGO, FOSSE, and FALSETTOS. Film credits include The Producers: the Movie Musical, Woody Allen’s Everyone Says I Love You, and the PBS special of FOSSE. Dana is a Musical Theatre faculty member at Marymount Manhattan College and teaches Theatre Dance at Steps on Broadway.
Valarie Pettiford Broadway/national tour credits include: SOPHISTICATED LADIES, BIG DEAL, DANCIN’, SWEET CHARITY, GRIND, WEST SIDE STORY, SHOWBOAT, CHICAGO, and FOSSE (Tony, Drama League, and Outer Critics nominee). Recent TV credits include “Half and Half” (3 NAACP Image nominations), “Being Mary Jane,” “Black-ish,” “True Blood,” “Born Again Virgin,” “Treme,” “Criminal Minds,” “CSI,” and “The Blacklist.” Film credits include “Jumping the Broom,” “Glitter,” and “Stomp the Yard.” Valarie is an NAACP Winner for best actress in the LA production of Michael John La Chuisa’s THE WILD PARTY as Queenie. She is a Bistro winner for the Cabaret Debut at the Metropolitan Room. She can be seen touring with her sold-out one women show around the country and has two CDs available on iTunes.
Mimi Quillin Broadway/national tour credits include the 1986 revival of SWEET CHARITY (Assistant Choreographer/Dance Captain), RAGTIME, and AIN’T BROADWAY GRAND. She recently won “Best Production” at the 2016 United Solo Festival for her one-woman show, “Call Fosse at the Minskoff.” Mimi continues to teach and choreograph for dance companies, theatres, and colleges across the country.
Request our reconstructeurs to teach at your university or studio or to speak at your event by e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org.