Friday, November 18, 2011

Fred Astaire Commemorative Postage Stamp Petition

Born Frederick Austerlitz (1899) in Omaha, Nebraska, Astaire was the quintessential American innovator in film and stage, as well as a master dancer, choreographer, actor and singer. His career spanned a total of 76 years, during that time he made 31 musical films, ten of which he made with Ginger Rogers (whose name is practically synonymous with Astaire).

Named as the fifth “Greatest Male Star of All Time” by the American Film Institute, Gene Kelley (another innovator in filmed dance) said that “the history of dance on film begins with Astaire.” Others have acknowledged Astaire’s greatness, including Rudolph Nureyev, Michael Jackson, Gregory Hines, Mikhail Baryshnikov, Jerome Robbins and George Balanchine.

Astaire has been credited with two important innovations in early film musicals: the use of a semi-stationary camera to film a single shot which allowed the dancers to be in full view at all times, and the seamless integration of song and dance routines into the plotlines of the films.

An Astaire performance was prized for its elegance, grace, originality and precision and drew upon a variety of influences including tap, and classical dance which greatly influenced the American Smooth style of ballroom dance.

Please take a moment to click on the link below and sign the petition.  Thank you.

For these reasons, we believe Astaire should be honored with a commemorative postage stamp.

We wish to petition the U.S. Postal Service and the members of the Citizen’s Stamp Advisory Committee to consider issuing a commemorative postage stamp marking the 115th birthday (2014) of the legendary film great, Fred Astaire.

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