Michael Kidd’s Seven Brides for Seven Brothers Barn-raising Dance

Seven Brides featured rising jazz dancer/choreographer/teacher Matt Mattox (aloft).

In our April issue’s History: Lesson Plan, we learn about Michael Kidd, a Broadway and film choreographer known for his character-driven choreography and energized style that blended jazz with ballet, gymnastics and gesture.

Seven Brides for Seven Brothers (1954) For the seven rough-and-tumble backwoods brothers of this film, Kidd combined what he called “work movements,” like swinging an ax and carrying logs, with graceful turns and balances and daredevil leaps and flips.

Check out the barn-raising dance that was widely regarded as Kidd’s masterpiece.

Photo: Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Inc., courtesy of Dance Magazine archives

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