Margo Sappington

Margo Sappington

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Margo Sappington is an American choreographer and dancer born July 30, 1947 in Baytown, Texas
Baytown, Texas
Baytown is a city within Harris County and partially in Chambers County in the Gulf Coast region of the U.S. state of Texas. Located within the Houston–Sugar Land–Baytown metropolitan area, it lies along both State Highway 146 and Interstate 10. As of 2010, Baytown had an population of 71,802...

.

She was nominated in 1975 for both a Tony Award
Tony Award
The Antoinette Perry Award for Excellence in Theatre, more commonly known as a Tony Award, recognizes achievement in live Broadway theatre. The awards are presented by the American Theatre Wing and The Broadway League at an annual ceremony in New York City. The awards are given for Broadway...

 as Best Choreographer and a Drama Desk Award
Drama Desk Award
The Drama Desk Awards, which are given annually in a number of categories, are the only major New York theater honors for which productions on Broadway, Off-Broadway, Off-Off-Broadway compete against each other in the same category...

 for Outstanding Choreography for her work on the play Where's Charley?
Where's Charley?
Where's Charley? is a musical with music and lyrics by Frank Loesser and book by George Abbott. The story was based on the play Charley's Aunt by Brandon Thomas. The musical debuted on Broadway in 1948 and was revived on Broadway and in the West End...

. In 1988, her ballet Virgin Forest was the subject of an award-winning documentary by PBS. In 2005 she received a Lifetime Achievement Award for choreography from the Joffrey Ballet
Joffrey Ballet
The Joffrey Ballet is a dance company in Chicago, Illinois, founded in 1956. From 1995 to 2004, the company was known as The Joffrey Ballet of Chicago. The company regularly performs classical ballets including Romeo & Juliet and The Nutcracker, while balancing those classics with pioneering modern...

.

Career


Sappington joined the Joffrey Ballet in 1965 at the personal invitation of founder Robert Joffrey
Robert Joffrey
Robert Joffrey was an American dancer, teacher, producer and choreographer, known for his highly imaginative modern ballets...

.
In 1969 she co-wrote, choreographed, and performed in the original off-Broadway
Off-Broadway
Off-Broadway theater is a term for a professional venue in New York City with a seating capacity between 100 and 499, and for a specific production of a play, musical or revue that appears in such a venue, and which adheres to related trade union and other contracts...

 musical Oh! Calcutta!
Oh! Calcutta!
Oh! Calcutta! is an avant-garde theatrical revue, created by British drama critic Kenneth Tynan. The show, consisting of sketches on sex-related topics, debuted Off-Broadway in 1969 and then in London in 1970. It ran in London for over 3,900 performances, and in New York initially for 1,314...


,
and in 1971 choreographed Weewis, her first ballet.
In 1975, in recognition of her work in the Broadway
Broadway theatre
Broadway theatre, commonly called simply Broadway, refers to theatrical performances presented in one of the 40 professional theatres with 500 or more seats located in the Theatre District centered along Broadway, and in Lincoln Center, in Manhattan in New York City...

 revival of the play Where's Charley?
Where's Charley?
Where's Charley? is a musical with music and lyrics by Frank Loesser and book by George Abbott. The story was based on the play Charley's Aunt by Brandon Thomas. The musical debuted on Broadway in 1948 and was revived on Broadway and in the West End...

, she received nominations for both a Tony Award
Tony Award
The Antoinette Perry Award for Excellence in Theatre, more commonly known as a Tony Award, recognizes achievement in live Broadway theatre. The awards are presented by the American Theatre Wing and The Broadway League at an annual ceremony in New York City. The awards are given for Broadway...

 for Best Choreographer

and a Drama Desk Award
Drama Desk Award
The Drama Desk Awards, which are given annually in a number of categories, are the only major New York theater honors for which productions on Broadway, Off-Broadway, Off-Off-Broadway compete against each other in the same category...



for Outstanding Choreography.

In 1983, as the first American choreographer working with Beijing
Beijing
Beijing , also known as Peking , is the capital of the People's Republic of China and one of the most populous cities in the world, with a population of 19,612,368 as of 2010. The city is the country's political, cultural, and educational center, and home to the headquarters for most of China's...

's Central Ballet of China, Sappington created their ballet Heliotrope.
In 1988, her ballet Virgin Forest, inspired by Henri Rousseau
Henri Rousseau
Henri Julien Félix Rousseau was a French Post-Impressionist painter in the Naïve or Primitive manner. He was also known as Le Douanier , a humorous description of his occupation as a toll collector...

's jungle paintings, was created for the Milwaukee Ballet
Milwaukee Ballet
The Milwaukee Ballet is a professional ballet company located in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, United States. It was founded in 1969 by Roberta Boorse and held its first performance on April 24, 1970. It is currently ranked among the top twelve ballet companies in the United States...


and was the subject of an award-winning documentary by PBS.
In 1993, as a section of the Joffrey's evening-length performance Billboards, she created and danced in Slide, as scored by musician Prince
Prince (musician)
Prince Rogers Nelson , often known simply as Prince, is an American singer, songwriter, musician, and actor. Prince has produced ten platinum albums and thirty Top 40 singles during his career. Prince founded his own recording studio and label; writing, self-producing and playing most, or all, of...

.
In 2001, with the participation of the group The Indigo Girls
Indigo Girls
The Indigo Girls are an American folk rock music duo, consisting of Amy Ray and Emily Saliers. They met in elementary school and began performing together as high school students in Decatur, Georgia, part of the Atlanta metropolitan area...

, Sappington created a piece called The Indigo Girls Project for the Atlanta Ballet
Atlanta Ballet
Atlanta Ballet is a ballet company, located in Atlanta, Georgia. It is the nation’s longest continuously performing ballet company and the State Ballet of Georgia.- History :...

.

In 2005, for Charles Strouse's Real Men at the Coconut Grove Playhouse
Coconut Grove Playhouse
The Coconut Grove Playhouse was a legitimate theater in the Coconut Grove neighborhood of Miami, Florida, United States.The building was originally constructed as a movie theater called the Player's State Theater. It first opened on January 3, 1927 as a part of the Paramount chain. The movie house...

, she created and danced a role in the premiere.
Also in 2005, she received a Lifetime Achievement Award presented to her by the Joffrey Ballet in recognition of her service to the arts.
In 2007 Sappington created a ballet called Common People
Common People
"Common People" is a song by English alternative rock band Pulp. It was released as a single in 1995, reaching number two on the UK singles chart. It also appears on the band's 1995 album Different Class. The song is about those who were perceived by the songwriter as wanting to be "like common...

, set to William Shatner
William Shatner
William Alan Shatner is a Canadian actor, musician, recording artist, and author. He gained worldwide fame and became a cultural icon for his portrayal of James T...

's album, Has Been
Has Been
Has Been is William Shatner's second musical album after 1968's The Transformed Man.The album was produced and arranged by Ben Folds and most of the songs are co-written by Folds and Shatner, with Folds creating arrangements for Shatner's prose-poems, and feature guest appearances from Joe Jackson...

, which was performed by the Milwaukee Ballet.

Shatner attended the premiere and filmed the event, footage of which became Gonzo Ballet, a feature film
Feature film
In the film industry, a feature film is a film production made for initial distribution in theaters and being the main attraction of the screening, rather than a short film screened before it; a full length movie...

 to be released in 2009.

In the United States, her choreography has been used by companies such as the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater
Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater
The Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater is a modern dance company based in New York, New York. It was founded in 1958 by choreographer and dancer Alvin Ailey...

, Carolina Ballet
Carolina Ballet
Carolina Ballet is a ballet company founded in 1997 which performs primarily in Raleigh, North Carolina and throughout the state. It has toured to New York City, Hungary and China. Robert Weiss, the artistic director, danced for George Balanchine for sixteen years at New York City Ballet and...

, the Joffrey Ballet, the Houston Ballet
Houston Ballet
The Houston Ballet, operated by the Houston Ballet Foundation, is the fourth-largest professional ballet company in the United States, based in Houston, Texas. The foundation also maintains a ballet academy, the Ben Stevenson Academy, which trains more than half of the company's dancers...

, the Harkness Ballet
Harkness Ballet
The Harkness Ballet was a major New York ballet company named after its founder Rebekah Harkness. Harkness inherited her husband's fortune in Standard Oil holdings and was a dance lover...

, the Milwaukee Ballet, Pacific Northwest Ballet
Pacific Northwest Ballet
Pacific Northwest Ballet is a ballet company based in Seattle, Washington in the United States. Founded in 1972 as part of the Seattle Opera and named the Pacific Northwest Dance Association, it broke away from the Opera in 1977 and took its current name in 1978. It is said to have the highest per...

, and the Pennsylvania Ballet
Pennsylvania Ballet
Founded in 1963 by Balanchine student and protégée Barbara Weisberger, Pennsylvania Ballet is one of the leading ballet companies in the United States. Headquartered in Philadelphia, the company’s annual local season features six programs of classic favorites and new works, including the...

, and internationally by companies including Aterballetto and Nederlands Dans Theater. She has also choreographed for many opera
Opera
Opera is an art form in which singers and musicians perform a dramatic work combining text and musical score, usually in a theatrical setting. Opera incorporates many of the elements of spoken theatre, such as acting, scenery, and costumes and sometimes includes dance...

 productions, including Aida
Aida
Aida sometimes spelled Aïda, is an opera in four acts by Giuseppe Verdi to an Italian libretto by Antonio Ghislanzoni, based on a scenario written by French Egyptologist Auguste Mariette...

, Samson and Delilah
Samson and Delilah
Samson and Delilah may refer to:*Samson, a Biblical figure*Delilah, a Biblical figure*Samson and Delilah, a Biblical narrative* Samson and Delilah , a painting by Peter Paul Rubens* Samson and Delilah, the club mascots of the Sunderland A.F.C...

, and La Gioconda
La Gioconda (opera)
La Gioconda is an opera in four acts by Amilcare Ponchielli set to an Italian libretto by Arrigo Boito, based on Angelo, tyran de Padoue, a play in prose by Victor Hugo, dating from 1835...

for the San Francisco Opera
San Francisco Opera
San Francisco Opera is an American opera company, based in San Francisco, California.It was founded in 1923 by Gaetano Merola and is the second largest opera company in North America...

.

Performer

  • Oh! Calcutta!
    Oh! Calcutta!
    Oh! Calcutta! is an avant-garde theatrical revue, created by British drama critic Kenneth Tynan. The show, consisting of sketches on sex-related topics, debuted Off-Broadway in 1969 and then in London in 1970. It ran in London for over 3,900 performances, and in New York initially for 1,314...

    (original) (1969–1972)
  • Promises, Promises
    Promises, Promises
    Promises, Promises is a musical based on the 1960 film The Apartment. The music is by Burt Bacharach, lyrics by Hal David, and book by Neil Simon. Musical numbers for the original Broadway production were choreographed by Michael Bennett; Robert Moore directed and David Merrick produced...

    (1968–1972)

Choreography

  • Doonesbury (1983–1984)
  • Play Me a Country Song, (1982)
  • Oh! Calcutta!
    Oh! Calcutta!
    Oh! Calcutta! is an avant-garde theatrical revue, created by British drama critic Kenneth Tynan. The show, consisting of sketches on sex-related topics, debuted Off-Broadway in 1969 and then in London in 1970. It ran in London for over 3,900 performances, and in New York initially for 1,314...

    (revival) (1976–1989)
  • Pal Joey
    Pal Joey
    Pal Joey is a 1940 epistolary novel by John O'Hara, which became the basis of the 1940 stage musical comedy and 1957 motion picture of the same name, with music by Richard Rodgers and lyrics by Lorenz Hart....

    (revival) (1976)
  • Where's Charley?
    Where's Charley?
    Where's Charley? is a musical with music and lyrics by Frank Loesser and book by George Abbott. The story was based on the play Charley's Aunt by Brandon Thomas. The musical debuted on Broadway in 1948 and was revived on Broadway and in the West End...

    (revival) (1974–1975)

Film and Television

  • William Shatner's Gonzo Ballet
    William Shatner's Gonzo Ballet
    William Shatner's Gonzo Ballet is a feature-length documentary film about a ballet by Margo Sappington called "Common People", which was set to the music of William Shatner and Ben Folds from their album Has Been...

    (2009
    2009 in film
    The year 2009 saw the release of many films. Seven made the top 50 list of highest-grossing films, and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced that as of this year, their Best Picture category would consist of ten nominees, rather than five .- Highest-grossing films :Please note...

    ) (choreographer, writer)
  • The Daring Project (2009
    2009 in film
    The year 2009 saw the release of many films. Seven made the top 50 list of highest-grossing films, and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced that as of this year, their Best Picture category would consist of ten nominees, rather than five .- Highest-grossing films :Please note...

    ) (herself)
  • Billboards: Prince at the Joffrey (1994) (choreographer)
  • The Baby-Sitters Club
    The Baby-Sitters Club
    The Baby-sitters Club is a series of novels written by Ann M. Martin and published by Scholastic between 1986 and 2000, that sold 17 milllon copies. Many of the novels were ghostwritten, including 43 by Peter Lerangis. However, Ann Martin wrote the first 35 novels.The series is about a group of...

    (1990 TV series) (choreographer)
  • Samson and Delilah
    Samson and Delilah
    Samson and Delilah may refer to:*Samson, a Biblical figure*Delilah, a Biblical figure*Samson and Delilah, a Biblical narrative* Samson and Delilah , a painting by Peter Paul Rubens* Samson and Delilah, the club mascots of the Sunderland A.F.C...

    (1981) (choreographer)
  • Rodin mis en vie (1976
    1976 in film
    The year 1976 in film involved some significant events.-Events:*March 22 - Filming begins on George Lucas' Star Wars science fiction film...

    ) (actress)
  • Oh! Calcutta!
    Oh! Calcutta!
    Oh! Calcutta! is an avant-garde theatrical revue, created by British drama critic Kenneth Tynan. The show, consisting of sketches on sex-related topics, debuted Off-Broadway in 1969 and then in London in 1970. It ran in London for over 3,900 performances, and in New York initially for 1,314...

    (1972
    1972 in film
    The year 1972 in film involved some significant events.-Top grossing films :- Awards :Academy Awards:*Avanti!, directed by Billy Wilder, starring Jack Lemmon and Juliet MillsB...

    ) (actress, choreographer, writer)
  • Bracken's World
    Bracken's World
    Bracken's World is an American drama series broadcast on NBC from September 19, 1969 to December 25, 1970. The series was created and produced by Dorothy Kingsley.-Synopsis:...

    , episode Fallen, Fallen Is Babylon (actress and choreographer)
  • 23rd Annual Tony Awards
    23rd Tony Awards
    The 23rd Annual Tony Awards was broadcast by NBC television on April 20, 1969, from the Mark Hellinger Theatre in New York City. Hosts were Diahann Carroll and Alan King....

    (1969) (performer)

Awards & nominations

  • 1975 Tony Award
    Tony Award
    The Antoinette Perry Award for Excellence in Theatre, more commonly known as a Tony Award, recognizes achievement in live Broadway theatre. The awards are presented by the American Theatre Wing and The Broadway League at an annual ceremony in New York City. The awards are given for Broadway...

     nomination as Best Choreographer
  • 1975 Drama Desk Award
    Drama Desk Award
    The Drama Desk Awards, which are given annually in a number of categories, are the only major New York theater honors for which productions on Broadway, Off-Broadway, Off-Off-Broadway compete against each other in the same category...

     nomination for Outstanding Choreography
  • 2005 Lifetime Achievement Award for choregoraphy

External links

  • Margo Sappington at the Internet Broadway Database
    Internet Broadway Database
    The Internet Broadway Database is an online database of Broadway theatre productions and their personnel. It is operated by the Research Department of The Broadway League, a trade association for the North American commercial theatre community....

  • Margo Sappington at the Internet Off-Broadway Database
  • Margo Sappington at the Internet Movie Database
    Internet Movie Database
    Internet Movie Database is an online database of information related to movies, television shows, actors, production crew personnel, video games and fictional characters featured in visual entertainment media. It is one of the most popular online entertainment destinations, with over 100 million...