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Robbins, Jerome (1918-1998)  
page: 1  2  

Shortly before the death of Balanchine in 1983, Robbins and Peter Martins were named co-directors of New York City Ballet, a post Robbins held until 1990.

Robbins took a leave from New York City Ballet in 1988 to stage Jerome Robbins' Broadway (1989), an anthology of dances and scenes from eleven of his Broadway shows. It won the Tony Award for Best Musical and ran 624 performances.

Robbins the perfectionist was often his own worst enemy. He was savagely demanding of his performers and unrelenting in his demands on himself. High expectations ruled his personal life as well, as Robbins pursued both men and women, but formed no permanent relationship.

Robbins' ballet Facsimile (1946) reflects his bisexuality, as two men and one woman vie for one another's affections.

Ballet dancer Nora Kaye told reporters that she and Robbins were to be wed in 1951; at the same time, Broadway dancer Buzz Miller and Robbins were in the midst of their five-year live-in relationship (1950-1955). Robbins' other romantic affairs included those with actor Montgomery Clift, writer Christine Conrad, photographer Jesse Gerstein, and filmmaker Warren Sonbert.

On 29 July 1998, Robbins died of a stroke at the age of 79. His numerous awards include one Emmy (Peter Pan), two Oscars (West Side Story), four Tony Awards, the Kennedy Center Honors (1981), and a National Medal of the Arts (1988).

The greatest classical choreographer born in this country and a Broadway innovator, Robbins took millions of people to a new place, as he once said, a world "where things are not named."

Bud Coleman

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Conrad, Christine. Jerome Robbins: The Broadway Man, That Ballet Man. London: Booth-Clibborn Editions, 2000.

Kisselgoff, Anna. "Jerome Robbins, 79, Is Dead; Giant of Ballet and Broadway." The New York Times (July 30, 1998): A1, A21.

Lawrence, Greg. Dance With Demons: The Life of Jerome Robbins. New York: G.T. Putnam's Sons, 2001.


    Citation Information
    Author: Coleman, Bud  
    Entry Title: Robbins, Jerome  
    General Editor: Claude J. Summers  
    Publication Name: glbtq: An Encyclopedia of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual,
Transgender, and Queer Culture
    Publication Date: 2002  
    Date Last Updated December 2, 2010  
    Web Address  
    Publisher glbtq, Inc.
1130 West Adams
Chicago, IL   60607
    Today's Date  
    Encyclopedia Copyright: © 2002-2006, glbtq, Inc.  
    Entry Copyright © 2002, glbtq, Inc.  


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