Home / General / Erik Visits an American Grave, Part 399

Erik Visits an American Grave, Part 399


This is the grave of Ruth Page.

Born in 1899 in Indianapolis, Page became of the greatest dancers in American history. She made her Broadway debut in 1917, toured South America in 1918 with a company, and worked for many other companies over her long life. She danced almost nonstop for forty years, choreographing many of the shows. She choreographed a huge production of The Nutcracker in 1965 that was presented every year in Chicago until 1997. Page worked with Aaron Copland and many other leading composers of the twentieth century, as well as the century’s leading dancers, such as Rudolf Nureyev, who performed one of her pieces for his 1962 New York debut. She created many ballets to go along with the leading composers of all time. When she retired, she founded the Ruth Page Foundation School of Dance, which is today the Ruth Page Center for the Arts. She died in 1991. She filmed a lot of stuff, so let’s look at some of her work and hear her speak about it.

Ruth Page is buried in Graceland Cemetery, Chicago, Illinois.

I know absolutely nothing about dance. Nothing. It makes my knowledge of opera look like my actual knowledge of 1960s country music. The only reason this is in the series is that I stumbled upon it while looking for someone else, saw the striking grave (the light was terrible that day but I imagine in the sunlight this is quite the marker), and figured out who it was later. So I will leave any additional discussion to you dance aficionados in the commenting community.

If you would like this series to cover other American dancers, you can donate to cover the required expenses here. Maria Tallchief is in Fairfax, Oklahoma and Robert Joffrey is in Manhattan. Previous posts in this series are archived here.

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