Eleanor Powell

Eleanor Powell

After a public appearances was at the AFI Tribute to her film co-star Fred Astaire, she made her final public appearance in October 1981 for the National Film Society in which the "Ellie" award was established for performances in filmed musicals.

Became the first specialty tapper to ever appear at Carnegie Hall.

Biography in: "The Scribner Encyclopedia of American Lives". Volume One, 1981-1985, pages 650-652. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1998.

Due to her becoming a minister in the Unity church, her ashes are placed in a bronze replica of the bible. She is interred at Hollywood Forever cemetery just a few steps down the hall from Rudolf Valentino, Peter Finch and several other great legends of film.

Her effortless machine gun-like tapping style was the result of having taken lessons early in her career and wearing sandbags that were tied to her feet.

Her first professional dancing job was at age 12 at Atlantic City's Ambassador Hotel.

Her parents separated when she was 11 months and divorced when she was two. Her mother told Eleanor as a child that her father had died to protect them from outside scandal, but Eleanor's father reintroduced himself to Eleanor in 1935 during the Boston run of "At Home Abroad."

In 1954, following a period of retirement, she was asked to host "The Faith of Our Children" (1953), a non-denominational religious program which featured appearances from film and sports stars. The show lasted three seasons and Eleanor received a regional "Emmy" award for children's programming.

Inducted into the International Tap Dance Hall of Fame in 2002 (inaugural class).

Measurements: 33-23-35 (in 1935), (Source: Celebrity Sleuth magazine)

Mother of the actor Peter Ford.

One of her first New York jobs was working with the legendary Bill Robinson in private shows (1927).

Shares a birthday with Björk, Goldie Hawn, Rachel Rogers, Nicollette Sheridan, & Juliet Mills

Took dancing classes as a child to overcome extreme shyness.

Was acclaimed "The World's Greatest Feminine Tap and Rhythm Dancer" by the Dance Masters of America in the mid-1930s.

With a preference toward ballet and acrobatics (notably her splits), she did not initially tap in her early career. In fact, she disliked the style which she considered lacking in grace. It was when she lost a number of musical roles in New York that she realized the need to learn. Due to her aerial style, she learned to tap by wearing army surplus belts with sandbags attached to ground herself.