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Robert Helpmann Poster

Biography

Jump to: Overview (4) | Mini Bio (1) | Trivia (12) | Personal Quotes (3)

Overview (4)

Date of Birth 9 April 1909Mount Gambier, South Australia, Australia
Date of Death 28 September 1986Sydney, Australia
Birth NameRobert Murray Helpman
Nickname Sir Bobby

Mini Bio (1)

Son of James Murray Helpmann & Mary (nee Gardiner), he was educated at Prince Alfred's College, Adelaide, South Australia. He first danced solo at the Theatre Royal, Adelaide in The Ugly Duckling in 1922. He went on to become the pricipal dancer at Sadlers Wells ballet from 1933 to 1950. World renowned as a dancer and choreographer, amongst his other achievements he was the director of the Australian Ballet Company. He directed the world tour of Margot Fonteyn in 1963.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Steve Crook <steve@brainstorm.co.uk>

Trivia (12)

Was the person who showed American actress Katharine Hepburn her first Lyrebirds during a working tour of Australia, when they co-starred in Shakespearian plays.
On his "This is Your Life" (in Australia) the guest of honour was Michael Powell who came on with a pair of "Red Shoes".
He was awarded the Scroll of Honour in Norway in 1950.
He was awarded a CBE (Commander of the Order of the British Empire) in the 1964 Queen's Birthday Honours List for his services to ballet.
He was made a KBE (Knight Bachelor of the Order of the British Empire) in the 1968 Queen's New Years Honours List for his services to dance.
He was awarded the Order of the Knight of the North Star in Sweden in 1975.
Has a theatre named after him in Mount Gambier; Sir Robert Helpman Theatre.
He added the extra 'n' to his stage name to avoid there being 13 letters in it.
The Australian Entertainment Industry Association's annual awards are named The Helpmann Awards in Helpmann's honour.
Brother of Sheila Helpmann
Was nearly killed during the production of Chitty Chitty Bang Bang when the carriage that he was driving spun out of control and turned over. Thanks to his dancer's reflexes, he was able to leap off of the moving wheel and land safely on his feet.
Many people talked about Robert Helpmann with kindness, saying that he respected the crew and children very much. He refused anybody to talk down to a crew member, and was known to get angry with people who did so.

Personal Quotes (3)

If I told you, you would not know; you simply would have been told.
Theatre remains the only thing I understand. It is in the community of the theatre that I have my being. In spite of jealousies and fears, emotional conflicts and human tensions; in spite of the penalty of success and the dread of failure; in spite of tears and feverish gaiety -- this is the only life I know. It is the life I love.
The Trouble with Nude Dancing is that not everything stops when the music does.

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