All images © Jan Deen, photographer.

Photo Gallery: Jan Deen Phototheatre

A collection of dance images of various genres through the decades, courtesy of photographer Jan Deen.


All images © Jan Deen, photographer.

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Lester Wilson and Michael Peters (foreground) with Trina Parks and Peter Calley, $600 & A Mule, 1973 Huntington Hartford Theatre, Los Angeles.


Lester Wilson creates the first history of Black dance styles before Hip Hop. $600 & A Mule, 1973. From the Los Angeles Free Press, Aug.31 1973 (Ronald Jenkins): $600 & A Mule soars above all comparable musical theatre productions, designed to succeed on the levels of Hair and J.C.Superstar. It explodes into our consciousness with pyrotechnics of swirling flesh, cloth, and sound. There are 11 musical numbers in the first act.  Ten of them are showstoppers. The continuing level of energy and talent is astounding. The music is superlative.  The singing is great and the dancing is a visual delight that seems to outdo itself with each succeeding number.  It is a very moving celebration of blackness, encompassing the tragedy, the joy and the hopes that constitute black culture without compromising the overall vision by overstating any of the parts. A difficult balance is skillfully achieved with astonishing efficacy, style and taste.  If it doesn't knock you flat on your ass, chances are you just don't have one to get knocked out onto.

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Buddha Prayer from Cantique de la Vie. Two dancers identified in foreground are David Ahdar and Helen MacAllister. Music Lili Boulanger, choreographer, Gene Marinaccio, (life size performance original from 35mm) published in Dance Magazine, 1971.


Rachel Rosenthal dance group, Was Black in An Aria to Chernobyl, Dance Kaleidoscope, John Anson Ford Theatre (1986).


Rachel Rosenthal dance group Was Black in An Aria to Chernobyl. Dance Kaleidoscope, John Anson Ford Theatre (1986). From Los Angeles Times Calendar (Sunday, Feb 6, 1994), titled Inside the Rosenthal Zone: What I'm saying in different ways is that unless we can learn to see ourselves cosmically as a species . . .we are probably going to become extinct.


Rachel Rosenthal's Was Black finale ritual dance (Linda Sibio background).


Katja Biesanz, choreographer and solo dancer. Delta Dawn.


Katja Biesanz. Celebration.


Ballet choreographer and teacher Michael Panaieff. Portrait by Jan Deen.


Mehmet Sander, Inner Space 1993. Three dancers explore the possibilities for profound movement within confinement of a plexiglass box. Commissioned by Joeffrey Ballet, Inner Space premiered at Highways performance space, moving to the Ahmanson and Kennedy Center. Sander calls his unique genre Action Architecture. He also choreographed Rachel Rosenthal Zone in 1994, the complete text with all Jan Deen photos appear in TDR Vol.45, 2001, MIT Press.


Hermes Pan, Fred Astaire collaborator and Academy Award winning choreographer for many of Hollywood's most memorable movie musicals, attends special AFI Tribute to Cyd Charisse, 1989.

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Dance star Cyd Charisse, partner to Astaire and Kelly, known for Singin' In The Rain, Silk Stockings, Bandwagon; receives AFI Tribute, 1989.


Lester Wilson and Michael Peters, foreground. ($600 & A Mule, 1973 Huntington Hartford Theatre, Los Angeles.)


Gene Marinaccio choreographs Into Light We Shall Return, dancers Charles Ward and Lynda Marx, 1971.


Marinaccio choreographs to music by Samuel Barber with Victoria Ryker, while partner Kenneth MacDonald observes.1971.


Marinaccio dancers Victoria, Kenneth, Jerry and Holly rehearse Into Light We Shall Return. 1971


L. Martina Young, dancer/choreographer/teacher/writer, circa 1985. Portrait by Jan Deen.


Dancers Bill & Jacqui Landrum in a piece by choreographer Claude Thompson, Dance Kaleidoscope, John Anson Ford Theatre, circa 1979.


Nancy Davis, Los Angeles Ballet, 1978.


Jan Deen commentary: Found what appears to be a complete Nutcracker, of course I shot many. But this is just a sweet classic of Helena Ross, who I recall as a very young prodigy and last I knew she started her own company , Ballet of the Sun. LA Times used her as a cultural billboard.

John Clifford and Johnna Kirkland

John Clifford, Johnna Kirkland, Rhapsody in Blue, Los Angeles Ballet, circa 1982.


Ron Link directs Bouncers hip hop remix 1991 at Tiffany Theatre. Link won lifetime achievement awards in 1997 from LA Weekly and from LA Drama Critics Circle in 1998. His cutting edge dark version of Godber's musical starred Andrew Stevens and Dan Gerrity.


LA Times Sept.15 1986/ Writer Judith Michaelson calls the Lewitzky Dance Gallery formal ''ground-breaking'' on Bunker Hill at 4th and Grand a major component of downtown's cultural renaissance which began with Los Angeles Theatre Center on Spring Street. The ceremonies occurred by the 44-story California Plaza glass and steel tower. Garbed in black tights and T-shirts that commemorated their 20th anniversary, 13 Lewitzky dancers joined 143 regional dancers from various companies to perform for city and state officials, celebrities and a standing room only crowd of several hundred.


A Ritualistic Blessing of the 3 million dollar site performed by Nigerian, Japanese, Hawaiian and native American dancers.


Fred Strickler, tap dancer, Los Angeles artist. Fred Strickler: ''The Dance Gallery Groundbreaking ceremony in 1986, downtown Los Angeles. The Dance Gallery was a project instigated by Bella Lewitzky, for the creation of a new home for dance in Los Angeles. The groundbreaking ceremony took place on Grand Avenue, near the site where the new building was to be constructed. The project was later abandoned, when the fundraising fell short of the goal to construct the building. The site is now occupied by Frank Gehry’s Disney Hall, home of the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra.''


Tap dancer Fred Strickler with pianist Althea Waites in Excursions at Dance Kaleidoscope, John Anson Ford Theater, Los Angeles, June 27, 1986.

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The Still Pointe, 1971 copyright photo, Marinaccio studio, Hollywood.

After the Flames 1978

After the Flames 1978. All images © Jan Deen.

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