TABLE OF CONTENTS


Descriptive Summary of the Collection

Administrative Information

Biography of Ruth Page

Scope and Content of the Collection

Organization

Selected Search Terms

Container List

Series 1: Production Files, 1965-1997

Series 2: Photographs, 1965-1997

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Inventory of the Ruth Page Nutcracker Papers, 1965-1997


The Newberry Library
Roger and Julie Baskes Department of Special Collections
60 West Walton Street
Chicago, Illinois 60610-7324
USA
Phone: 312-255-3506
Fax: 312-255-3646
E-Mail: specialcolls@newberry.org
URL: http://www.newberry.org

Machine-readable finding aid encoded by Joy L. Austria, 2008.

©2008.


Descriptive Summary of the Collection

Creator Long, Larry, 1937-2010
Title Ruth Page Nutcracker Papers
Dates 1965-1997
Extent 2.5 linear feet (6 boxes)
Abstract Files and photographs relating to the Nutcracker ballet, choreographed by Ruth Page, in Chicago from 1965 to 1997.
Language Materials are in English.
Repository Newberry Library, Roger and Julie Baskes Department of Special Collections
Collection Call Number Dance MS Ruth Page Nutcracker
Collection Stack Location 3a 48 12

Administrative Information

Cite As

Ruth Page Nutcracker Papers, The Newberry Library, Chicago.

Provenance

Gift of Larry Long, 2006.

Processed by

Leslie James Osterberg, 2007.

Access

The Ruth Page Nutcracker Papers are open for research in the Special Collections Reading Room; 1 box at a time (Priority III).

Ownership and Literary Rights

The Ruth Page Nutcracker Papers are the physical property of the Newberry Library. Copyright may belong to the authors or their legal heirs or assigns. For permission to publish or reproduce any materials from this collection, contact the Roger and Julie Baskes Department of Special Collections.

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Biography of Ruth Page

Chicago dancer, choreographer, and ballet director.

Dancer, choreographer, and ballet director, Ruth Page (1899-1991) was a pioneer in creating works on American themes. To the classical ballet vocabulary she added movements from sports, popular dance, and everyday gestures. Born in Indianapolis, Ruth Page studied with Adolph Bolm in New York, and after a tour with Anna Pavlova’s ballet company she joined Bolm’s Ballet Intime. In 1919 she came to Chicago to dance the leading role in Birthday of the Infanta, choreographed by Bolm to a score by Chicagoan John Alden Carpenter. After dancing in a Broadway musical, she returned to Chicago in 1924 as principal dancer with Bolm’s Allied Arts Ballet. From 1926 to 1931 she was a principal dancer and choreographer for the Ravinia Opera Company. While dancing and directing the ballet ensemble for the Chicago Opera Company (from 1934 to 1945, with several off-seasons), Page codirected with Bentley Stone the Dance Project of the Works Progress Administration’s Federal Theatre (1938 and 1939). From 1954 to 1969 she directed the ballet for Chicago Lyric Opera.

Miss Page formed the Chicago Opera Ballet in 1955, choreographing a number of ballets based on opera subjects, following the story line as closely as possible and using the music. This company performed in Chicago and toured in the United States; the company later became known as the Ruth Page’s International Ballet. From1965 to 1968, Miss Page choreographed and produced a full-scale of The Nutcracker at Chicago’s Arie Crown Theatre, sponsored by the Chicago Tribune Charities, using dancers from her own Chicago Opera Ballet. There were no performances of the Ruth Page Nutcracker in 1969 and 1970; the ballet performances resumed in 1971 and lasted until 1997.

[much of this biography comes from Ruth Page: A Chicago Dance Institution, by Ann Barzel]

Larry Long was born in California where he began his ballet training with the former Russian ballerina, Alexandra Baldina. He was a member of Alicia Alonso’s Ballet and later joined Ruth Page’s Chicago Opera Company. He became a principal dancer and later ballet master of Miss Page’s International Ballet Company until its dissolution in 1969. When of Page’s The Nutcracker resumed in 1971, Mr. Long became ballet master and associate director. He became director in 1992, a position he held until the final year of in 1997.

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Scope and Content of the Collection

The collection consists of a variety of material related to the of The Nutcracker ballet as choreographed by Ruth Page. It includes dancer contact sheets, cast directories and sign-in sheets, rehearsal schedules, tentative casting, and specific performance casts. There are also performance schedules, publicity and press releases, advertisements, ticket order forms, programs, souvenir books, and reviews. There are drawings for costumes and sets (notably sketches by Jose Varona), and also some miscellaneous correspondence. A large number of photographs of principal and corps dancers, both professional and candid, are included. Prominent principal dancers include Larry Long, Dolores Lipinski, and Richard Ellis.

The collection is organized into two series: Series 1: Production Files, 1965 – 1997 (Boxes 1-3); Series 2: Photographs, 1965 – 1997 (Box 4-6).

Narrative descriptions of the subject matter, types of material, and arrangement of each series are available through the Organization section of the finding aid.

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Organization

Papers are organized in the following series:

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Selected Search Terms

The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the Newberry Library's public catalog. Researchers desiring additional materials on a particular topic should search the catalog using these headings.

Names

  • Arie Crown Theater (Chicago, Ill.)
  • Chicago Opera Ballet
  • Ellis, Richard
  • Lipinski, Dolores
  • Long, Larry, 1937-2010
  • Nutcracker (Choreographic work : Page)
  • Page, Ruth, 1899-1991
  • Varona, José

Subjects

  • Ballet companies -- Illinois -- Chicago
  • Dance -- Production and direction
  • Digital images -- Illinois -- Chicago
  • Manuscripts, American -- Illinois -- Chicago
  • Photographs -- Illinois -- Chicago -- 1951-2000
  • Souvenir programs -- Illinois -- Chicago -- 1951-2000

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Container List

Series 1: Production Files, 1965-1997

Production files include programs, souvenir books, clippings, and other publicity materials, as well as dancer contact sheets, cast directories and sign-in sheets, rehearsal schedules, tentative casting, and other administrative materials. Correspondence with Shakespeare Repertory refers to the use of space at the Ruth Page Center, and not with the Nutcrackers.
Arranged chronologically by year, followed by material relating to the post-1997 cancellation of the Ruth Page Nutcracker , financial statements, and miscellaneous correspondence.

Box Folder Contents
1 1 Production Files, 1965
1 2 Production Files, 1966
1 3 Production Files, 1967
1 4 Production Files, 1968
1 5 Production Files, 1971
1 6 Production Files, 1972
1 7 Production Files, 1973
1 8 Production Files, 1974
1 9 Production Files, 1975
1 10 Production Files, 1976
1 11 Production Files, 1977
1 12 Production Files, 1978
1 13 Production Files, 1979
1 14 Production Files, 1980
1 15 Production Files, 1981
1 16 Production Files, 1982
1 17 Production Files, 1983
1 18 Production Files, 1984
1 19 Production Files, 1985
2 20 Production Files, 1986
2 21 Production Files, 1987
2 22 Production Files, 1988
2 23 Production Files, 1989
2 24 Production Files, 1990
2 25 Production Files, 1991
2 26 Costume/Set Design, Jose Varona, 1991
2 27 Costume/Set Design, others, 1991
3 28 Production Files, 1992
3 29 Production Files, 1993
3 30 Production Files, 1994
3 31 Production Files, 1995
3 32-33 Production Files, 1996
3 34 Production Files, 1997
3 35 Production Cancellation after 1997 Season
3 36 Financial summaries (incomplete), 1976-1995
3 37 Correspondence - Pemberton & Oakes (commemorative souvenir plates), 1982
3 38 Correspondence - Shakespeare Repertory (regarding use of the Ruth Page Theatre space), 1995
3 38 Correspondence - Shakespeare Repertory (regarding use of the Ruth Page Theatre space), 1995

Series 2: Photographs, 1965-1997

Prints, negatives, transparencies, and electronic files (jpgs) of professional and promotional photographs, as well as candid shots both onstage and offstage. The 1994 images include still images from a videotaped performance, captured on jpg images (color) and printouts of those images (black and white).
Photographs arranged by medium and size, and chronologically therein. Photographs of performers seen in multiple years follow the chronological sequence.

Box Folder Contents
4 39 Nutcracker, 1965
4 40 Nutcracker, 1966
4 41 Nutcracker, 1968
4 42 Nutcracker, 1971
4 43 Nutcracker (see also oversize folder 67), 1973
4 44 Nutcracker, 1974
4 45 Nutcracker, 1980
4 46 Nutcracker (candid photos), 1982
4 47 Nutcracker (candid photo), 1984
4 48 Nutcracker (professional and candid photos), 1986
4 49 Nutcracker (candid photo), 1987
4 50 Nutcracker (candid photos), 1989
4 51 Nutcracker (candid photos), 1991
4 52-53 Nutcracker (candid photos; still images from videotape), 1994
4 54 Nutcracker (candid photo), 1996
4 55 Nutcracker (candid photos), 1997
4 56 Nutcracker, Multi-year casting, ca. 1965-1985
4 57 Nutcracker dancers in other roles, professional photos, 1960s-1980s
4 58 Professional photos, unidentified dancers, n.d.
4 59 Candid photos of unidentified dancers, n.d.
4 60 Ruth Page/Larry Long
4 61 Miscellaneous- undated professional photos, unidentified dancers, n.d.
5 62 Oversize photographs, various Nutcracker performances, ca. 1965-1981, n.d.
5 63 Oversize photographs, miscellaneous unidentified dancers, n.d.
6 64 Color proof sheets and negatives, n.d.
6 65 Color slides, 1974-1987, n.d.
6 66 Negatives
-- 67 Oversized color photograph: Richard Arve and Mimi Rozak in “Coffee” scene, 1973