Friday, February 5, 2016

Alice Mills, The Chaperone, and Louise Brooks, the 15 year old dancer

Revealed here for the first time, pictures not seen in nearly 100 years, are two remarkable newspaper clippings. The first depicts Alice Mills, the Wichita, Kansas dance instructor who taught Louise Brooks and, as importantly, was the woman who chaperoned the 15 year old Brooks to New York City to study with Denishawn.

According to press reports from the time, Brooks was not the only local set to study with Denishawn; so did Mills. That may explain why Mills chaperoned Brooks, and not her mother, who was originally mentioned as the person who would accompany the aspiring 15 year old dancer. The stunning clipping shown below depicts Brooks shortly before she was to leave for NYC.

Tomorrow's post will contains some additional information on this turning point in Brooks' life, which is beautifully depicted in Laura Moriarty's novel, The Chaperone.

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