2021 55¢ Tap Dance – Ayodele Casel
Value: 55¢ 1-ounce First-class rate (Forever)
Issue Date: July 10, 2021
First Day City: New York, NY
Type of Stamp: Commemorative
Printed by: Ashton Potter (USA) Ltd.
Printing Method: Offset
Format: Pane of 20
Quantity Printed: 18,000,000
Gene Kelly (August 23, 1912 – February 2, 1996) was one of many actor-singer-dancers who found their way to fame in the 1950s and 1960s. He was energetic and athletic, and both qualities translated to his dancing – especially tap dancing. Later in his career, Kelly also went on to become a co-director.
Kelly was originally a dance teacher, but decided to focus on becoming a performer himself. He made his Broadway debut in November 1938. From there, his career took off, and eventually, Hollywood came knocking. Kelly's first motion picture was alongside Judy Garland in 1942's For Me and My Gal.
It wasn't long before Kelly was in charge of choreographing his own dances. In fact, he became famous for the routine where he danced with his reflection. This became known as the Alter-Ego Dance, which he first performed in the 1944 film Cover Girl. Kelly used trick photography to make the routine convincig and to give his reflection a ghostly quality. Kelly collaborated with director and choreographer Stanley Donen to create the Alter-Ego Dance.
Despite his star status, Gene Kelly was down to earth and was known for his work ethic. He gave credit where credit was due, and treated everyone with respect. Kelly truly was one of a kind.