Tuesday, November 15, 2011


Vera-Ellen was, reportedly, a very shy child.  She developed severe health issues by age nine.  She began taking dance lessons for therapy of both mind and body, and developed a passion for it.  She had talent and, at a young age, joined the Rockettes.  She made her debut on Broadway at age eighteen.  From there, she soon went to film.  She danced with Fred Astaire, Gene Kelly, and Donald O'Connor.  She also starred in roles with Danny Kaye and Bing Crosby.

Unfortunately, tough times were not over for her just because of her passion for dancing.  She was married twice, divorced twice.  Her one child, Victoria Ellen Rothschild, died of SIDS.  Furthermore, in the 1950s, before anorexia was even coined or properly treated, she was anorexic.

When musicals lost their popularity, her career declined.  She may have continued as an acting talent, but there's speculation that there may have been some dark influences which ended up driving her away from this path.  She retired from dancing when she was only in her thirties and died at sixty, quietly.  No one heard of her for decades until the news came that she had died of cancer.

 Vera-Ellen was a lovely dancer and actor.  She was extremely talented, which is never so apparent as in her 'Dance to the Ocarina'.  Watch for nearly flawless footwork and fast turns.  She was not, however, a singer, and most of her singing roles were dubbed.

She was one of many extraordinary talents who had trauma in their personal life.  Her career, though brief, was very beautiful.  It was probably best that her career was so short, so that we could remember her at her best.

Her full name was Vera-Ellen Westmeyer Rohe


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