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Ann Reinking - Broadway singer died at 77. Photo: deadline.com

Who is Ann Reinking - Broadway singer died at 77?

Ann Reinking (born November 10, 1949) is known as an American actress, dancer, and choreographer. Her extensive work in musical theatre includes starring in Broadway productions of Coco (1969), Over Here! (1974), Goodtime Charley (1975), Chicago (1977), Dancin' (1978) and Sweet Charity (1986). In the 1996 revival of Chicago, she reprised the role of Roxie Hart and was also the choreographer, winning the Tony Award for Best Choreography. For the 2000 West End production of Fosse, she won the Olivier Award for Best Theatre Choreographer. It is revealed by the peopleill.com that she has also appeared in the films All That Jazz (1979), Annie (1982), and Micki & Maude (1984).

Ann Reinking's early life

Reinking was born in Seattle, Washington, the daughter of Frances (née Harrison) and Walter Reinking. She grew up in the suburb of Bellevue. As a child, Reinking began ballet lessons, studying with former Ballets Russes dancers Marian and Illaria Ladre in Seattle. Reinking made her professional performing debut at the age of 12 in a production of Giselle with the English Royal Ballet.

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Ann Reinking with the cup for Tony-winning-chorographer. Photo: APnews.

Ann Reinking's career as a Broadway singer

Reinking moved to New York City at age 18 and danced as a member of the corps de ballet at the Radio City Music Hall, performed in the ensemble of the second national tour of Fiddler on the Roof, and at the age of 19 made her Broadway debut in the musical Cabaret. She was a chorus dancer in Coco (1969), Wild and Wonderful (1971), and Pippin (1972). During Pippin, she came to the attention of the show's director and choreographer Bob Fosse. Reinking became Fosse's protégée and romantic partner, an affair that continued even as Fosse was still legally married to (though separated from) Gwen Verdon at the time.

In 1974, Reinking came to critical notice in the role of Maggie in Over Here!, winning a Theatre World Award. She starred as Joan of Arc in Goodtime Charley in 1975, receiving Tony Award and Drama Desk nominations for Best Actress in a Musical.

In 1976, she replaced Donna McKechnie as Cassie in A Chorus Line; in 1977, she replaced Verdon in the starring role of Roxie Hart in Chicago, a show directed and choreographed by Fosse. In 1978, she appeared in Fosse's revue Dancin' and received another Tony nomination.

In 1979, Reinking appeared in Bob Fosse's semi-autobiographical film All That Jazz as Katie Jagger, a role loosely based on her own life and relationship with Fosse.

In March 1985, Reinking appeared at the 57th Academy Awards to give a mostly lip-synced vocal performance accompanied by a dance routine of the Academy Award-nominated Phil Collins single "Against All Odds (Take a Look at Me Now)".

In 1986, she returned to Broadway, replacing Debbie Allen in a successful revival of Fosse's production of Sweet Charity. In 1991, she appeared in her first theatre production following the birth of her son, the Broadway National Tour of Bye Bye Birdie, costarring Tommy Tune. In 1992 she contributed choreography to Tommy Tune Tonite!, a three-man revue featuring Tune.

Reinking founded the Broadway Theater Project, a Florida training program connecting students with seasoned theatre professionals, in 1994. In 1995, she choreographed the ABC television movie version of the Broadway musical Bye Bye Birdie.

In 1998, she co-created, co-directed and co-choreographed the revue Fosse, receiving a Tony Award co-nomination for Best Direction of a Musical. For her work on the West End production of Fosse, Reinking (along with the late Bob Fosse himself) won the 2001 Olivier Award for Best Theatre Choreographer. In 2001, she received an honorary doctorate from Florida State University for her contribution to the arts.

Reinking served as a judge of annual New York City public school dance competitions for inner-city youth and appeared in Mad Hot Ballroom, the 2005 documentary film about the competition. In 2012, she contributed choreography for the Broadway production of An Evening with Patti LuPone and Mandy Patinkin. She has served as a member of the advising committee for the American Theatre Wing.

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Ann Reinking with Fosse. Photo: The New Yorker.

Ann Reinking's personal life: the woman who divorced 4 times

Reinking has been married four times, first in 1970 to Larry Small. Following their divorce, she married investment banker Herbert Allen Jr. on August 25, 1982; they divorced in 1989. Next, she was married in 1989 to businessman James Stuart, with whom she had one child, son Christopher, before their divorce in 1991. Reinking has been married since 1994 to sportswriter Peter Talbert and is stepmother to Leslie, Christie, Herbert, and Charlies. As of February 2017, Reinking lives primarily in Phoenix, Arizona.

Reinking's son Chris has Marfan syndrome, and Reinking works with the Marfan Foundation, which is dedicated to raising awareness of the disease. She produced the 2009 documentary In My Hands: A Story of Marfan Syndrome.

Ann Reinking's death at the age of 77

The shock news was reported by her manager, Lee Gross, that she died Saturday while seeing family in Seattle, as shared with the Hollywood reporter. Ms Reinking died in her sleep in a hotel room in the Seattle area, where she was visiting her older brother, said Dahrla King, her sister-in-law. The cause was not yet known, she said.

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