dontate now

Join Email List

Facebook  Become a Fan on Facebook
twitter  Follow Us on Twitter

329 West 18th Street Suite #610
Chicago, Illinois 60616
(312) 243-1808

Search Collections

Carmen (4th Act) [1960, Chicago, Civic Opera House]

Bookmark and Share
Film Identifier: F.2011-05-0025
Run Time
0h 11m 28s
Date Produced
Ruth Page has staged at least 4 versions of Carmen, all set to Georges Bizet's original opera music. The first version was choreographed and performed in 1926 at the Ravinia Opera. The second version, in which "Carmen" is transported to Civil War Spain, was choreographed by Ruth Page and Bentley Stone and premiered in Chicago at the Great Northern Theatre on February 1, 1939 by the Page-Stone Ballet. The version depicted in this film is likely the third version, shown here in rehearsal in 1960 at the Chicago Civic Opera. The film canister label indicates that the rehearsal was conducted without music. This version of Carmen was premiered in Dubuque, Iowa at Clark College on January 11, 1960, with music arranged by Isaac Van Grove and with scenery and costumes by Nicolai Remisoff. It was performed by Page's Chicago Opera Ballet.
The film opens with a view of a stage, full of dancers in practice clothes. The women are all wearing flowing scarves on their heads and character shoes. The dancers are arranged in couples but are moving synchronously as an ensemble. Eventually the group splits and the dancers line up on the two sides of the stage, making way for a trio (two women, one man) that enters and begins to dance at center. One of the women soon stands back while the other dances a brief pas de deux with the man; then they stand back while she performs a solo. Afterwards, the trio comes back together and is joined by four more dancers in a row behind them; all dance as an ensemble. Next, even more dancers arrive and those on the sidelines begin to participate in what appears to be the finale, with the trio leading in front. When they all strike their final pose, the film cuts to a different point in the choreography in which many dancers arrange themselves into a 'V' formation and kneel, watching a couple enter and prepare perform a pas de deux (presumably, the woman is Carmen). The film then cuts again to show this same entrance while more zoomed in, and remains there as the Spanish-styled pas de deux unfolds. Eventually, the camera zooms back out and all rise; many other couples join the central pair in their dance (though their choreography is different). The formations change several times but the couple remains the central focus; at one point the many other dancers on stage form a circle, join hands, and dance a quick chain of pas de basque-like steps around them. Eventually, all strike a final pose and the film ends.
Additional Credits
Page, Ruth (is choreographer)
Actors, Performers and Participants
Olivares, Luis (is performer)
Klekovic, Patricia (is performer)
Johnson, Kenneth (is performer)
Bockman, Jane (is performer)
Amparo, Nila (is performer)