July 1 – A Dancer Is Born!

Posted on July 1, 2013

What can you do with your life when you are named after a Pig Princess?

The 89th Annual Muncie Fair in Indiana crowned a “Pig Princess” (as in every other year)—this particular year a woman named Twila Thornburg. This was the crowning glory of Ms. Thornburg's life, so we won't be mentioning her again.

A little baby girl born on this date in 1941 was named Twyla after that Pig Princess.

And Twyla Tharp grew up to become a famous dancer and choreographer!

Although she was born on a farm in Indiana, Tharp grew up close to where I live, in Rialto, California. She worked hard as a kid. Her mom had her take a lot of lessons after school:
tap dance
jazz dance
modern dance

Also, Tharp worked at the family business, a drive-in movie theater, from age 8 on.

And she probably worked hard on schoolwork, because she went to Pomona College (which is even closer to where I live! Just down the street, really!) – and that college is pretty hard to get into.

Tharp kept taking dance classes all that time, and when moved to New York City, she was able to study with some really important dancers and choreographers.

A huge contribution that Tharp made to dance as a choreographer, herself, is the crossover ballet. She merged ballet with jazz, modern, and ballroom dance—and this style became very popular. Some of Tharp's shows are based on popular music by bands and singers such as the Beach Boys and Bob Dylan. I got to see a great Tharp show called Movin' Out, with dances set to the music and lyrics of Billy Joel.

Also on this date:

 Independence Day in Burundi 

Anniversary of the first public zoo in the US

Plan ahead:

Check out my Pinterest pages on July holidays, historical anniversaries in July, and July birthdays.

And here are my Pinterest pages on August holidays, historical anniversaries in August, and August birthdays.

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