Bob Fosse

Choreographer / Dancer

Born: 23 June 1927
Died: 23 September 1987 (heart attack)
Birthplace: Chicago, Illinois
Best known as: The choreographer of Sweet Charity and other Broadway shows
As a choreographer, Bob Fosse changed the course of Broadway musicals with his distinctively slinky, sexy style of dancing. Then he developed into a multimedia triple threat: in 1973 he won an Academy Award for directing the movie Cabaret (which also won a best actress Oscar for Liza Minnelli), three Emmy awards for directing, producing and choreographing Minelli's TV special Liza With a Z, and two Tony Awards for directing and choreographing the Broadway show Pippin. That feat is, so far, unmatched. Fosse's other hit Broadway shows included Sweet Charity (1965), Chicago (1975) and Dancin' (1978). Fosse was married three times, most famously to his dance partner Gwen Verdon, and was also famous for his extramarital womanizing and freewheeling lifestyle. He told his own story in the semi-autobiographical movie All That Jazz (1979). A 1998 revue, Fosse, collected his most famous dance works into one show.
Extra credit: Fosse died of a heart attack in Washington D.C. during the run of a revival of his 1965 show Sweet Charity... A 2002 film version of Chicago won the Academy Award as the year's best picture; it was directed by Rob Marshall and starred Renee Zellweger as Roxie Hart, the role originated by Verdon.

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More on Bob Fosse from Fact Monster:

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  • Bob Fosse - Biography of Bob Fosse, The choreographer of Sweet Charity and other Broadway shows
  • Ann Reinking - Biography of Ann Reinking, Fosse-influenced choreographer and star of Chicago
  • Gwen Verdon - Biography of Gwen Verdon, The original Lola in Broadway's Damn Yankees
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