Saving Radio City with a Former RCMH Dancer

Saving Radio City with a Former RCMH Dancer

Join former Radio City dance captain Rosemary (Rosie) Novellino-Mearns and her husband William Mearns, captain of the Singers, to uncover the story of their fight to save the “Showplace of the Nation!”
  • Watch the stunning announcement made by Alton Marshall (President of RCMH) that the Music Hall would be closing after the Easter Show on April 1978
  • Uncover the true story of how the Dance Captain of the RCMH Ballet Company became incensed and started the fight to save the theater
  • Hear a brief history of the architecture and artwork that epitomizes what a true Art Deco gem Radio City Music Hall was in 1932 and still is
  • Learn about the creative genius of Roxy (S. L. Rothafel) and the creative team that made the Music Hall famous
  • See vintage news clips from the 3-month campaign that surprised and angered the management of the Music Hall, but ultimately led to its salvation

About the event:

Join us to hear a first hand account of how Radio City Music Hall, Art Deco masterpiece and one of New York City’s iconic cultural landmarks, was saved from demolition. Using live media coverage from the period, Rosemary Novellino-Mearns, dance captain of the legendary Radio City Music Hall Ballet Company and Bill Mearns captain of the Singers during the 1970s, reveal the amazing David and Goliath battle story of how they motivated a small group of dedicated colleagues and friends to join forces and challenge the Rockefeller establishment. Against all odds, they led the fight to save the “Showplace of the Nation.”

About Rosemary (Rosie) Novellino-Mearns: 

Rosemary (Rosie) Novellino-Mearns is an author, retired dancer, lyricist, and playwright. Listed among the “Great Women of Rockefeller Center,” Rosemary’s career began in Radio City Music Hall’s Ballet Company where she danced for 12 years and became the Dance Captain. In 1978, she was elected President of “The Showpeople’s Committee To Save Radio City Music

In her book “Saving Radio City Music Hall: A Dancer’s True Story,” she reveals her amazing battle to save that magnificent Art Deco theater. As a result of her book, Rosie, as she likes to be called, is featured in the new award winner documentary Going Attractions: The Definitive Story of the Movie Palace, directed by April Wright. After leaving the Music Hall, she worked with Broadway choreographer/director Tony Tanner at Westbury Music Fair and her final professional dancing was in the touring Company of Michael Bennett’s “BALLROOM” where she was a featured dancer in the role of Marie.

Since retiring from the dance world she has become a lyricist with her composer husband William Mearns who she met on The Great Stage at Radio City Music Hall where he was a soloist singer. Jointly they have written the score for “EBENEZER” based on “A Christmas Carol,” “A PATCH OF LIFE,” based on “Mrs. Wiggs Of The Cabbage Patch,” and “THE HAUNTED BOOKSHOP.” Rosie also has a Blog page: “Read What Rosie Wrote” featuring some of her published Non-Fiction Short Stories. 

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