Featured Photo: Ted Shawn (21 October 1891 -- 9 January 1972), notable male pioneer of American modern dance.
Pictured: Ted Shawn in Cosmic Dance of Śiva (Shiva) during the Ziegfeld Follies Tour of 1928.
Photo Source: The New York Public Library/ flickr commons
Ted Shawn - Notable for a number of things including:
- Co-founder of the Denishawn school and company in 1914;
- Founded the all-male dance company, Ted Shawn and His Men Dancers (1933-1940);
- Created Jacob's Pillow, a dance school, retreat, and theater in 1933;
- Founded the Jacob's Pillow Dance Festival in Massachusetts (Still running).
- Becoming the first American male dancer to achieve worldwide recognition as an influence in dance.
Ted married his co-founder of Denishawn, Ruth St. Denis, in 1914 and they separated in 1929; although not formally or legally. He then became romantically involved with a member of his dance company, Barton Mumaw, (1912 or 1913-2001) for a number of years, (1931-1948). However, the couple took extreme pains to conceal their relationship. One of the ploys they employed was having Barton work as Shawn's chauffeur and dresser. In 1948 Shawn hired a stage manager by the name of John Christian, (1921-1982) for his solo tour; this turned out to being hired on to supervise sets, costumes and lighting at the Pillow Dance festival, which in turn led to becoming an administrator and host for the festival. Christian too became Shawn's lover, up until Shawn's death in 1972.