Sono Osato, 'Ballet Russe' dancer, 1939-1940

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When: 01 January 1939

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Sono Osato, ballet dancer and first dancer of Japanese descent, and the first American, to join Ballet Russe, Colonel de Basil's "Original Ballet Russe", 1939-1940, copied from earlier studio photograph by Sam Hood, ON 204 Box 14/20-103


Owner: State Library of NSW
Source: Flickr Commons
Views: 10448
dancer ballet balletrusse australia samhood statelibraryofnewsouthwales sonoosato

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    • 25/Oct/2022 19:53:08

    Wonderful photo, reminds me of my family.

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    Blue Mountains Library, Local Studies

    • 25/Oct/2022 23:41:01

    Sono Osato was born in Omaha, Nebraska. She was the oldest of three children of a Japanese father (Shoji Osato, 1885–1955) and an Irish-French Canadian mother (Frances Fitzpatrick, 1897–1954). Her family moved to Chicago in 1925 in order to be closer to Frances' family, and Shoji opened a photography studio there. In 1927, when she was eight, Osato's mother took her and her sister to Europe for two years; while in Monte Carlo, they attended a performance of Cléopâtre by Sergei Diaghilev's famous Ballets Russes company, which inspired Osato to start ballet classes when she returned to Chicago in late 1929. She studied with prominent dancers Berenice Holmes and Adolph Bolm. She performed with ballet companies Ballets Russe de Monte-Carlo and the American Ballet Theatre. As an actress, she starred alongside Frank Sinatra in the film The Kissing Bandit. More -