Slaughter On Tenth Avenue

 Slaughter on Tenth Avenue is a ballet with music by Richard Rodgers and choreography by George Balanchine. It occurs near the end of Rodgers and Hart's 1936 Broadway musical comedy On Your Toes. Slaughter is the story of a hoofer who falls in love with a dance hall girl who is then shot and killed by her jealous boyfriend. The hoofer then shoots the boyfriend.

The ballet is integrated into the plot of the musical by the device of having two gangsters watching it from box seats in the theatre in which it is staged. They have orders to shoot the leading dancer. The dancer, who has been warned just in time, evades them by suddenly dancing at full speed even after the ballet actually ends, and finally two police officers enter and arrest the gangsters.

Slaughter on Tenth Avenue was danced by Ray Bolger and Tamara Geva in the original stage production of On Your Toes, and by Eddie Albert and Vera Zorina in the film version. In Words and Music, the 1948 Technicolor film biography of Rodgers and Hart, the ballet was danced by Gene Kelly and Vera-Ellen, with a somewhat revised, more tragic storyline, and new choreography by Kelly.

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