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Dance Heritage Coalition

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Grassi (Amata B.) Papers, 1878-1971

- Biography


Amata Grassi was born in New York on June 1, 1894. Originally named Anna Beatrice Koch she chose her stage name after her mother, Caroline Grasse (1837-1917). Amata Grassi began her dancing career with Anna Pavlova in 1917. In the following year, while touring in Buenos Aires, she met her future first husband, Chester Hale (Chamberlin). Soon after they left the famous dancer to form their own company. She also danced with the Adolph Bolm Ballet Intime and the Chicago Opera Co., toured in vaudeville, musical comedy and concert. In 1928 she was a premier dancer of Paul Whiteman's Rio Romance. During World War II she was company manager of a Major Bowes unit that made a USO tour of Army camps. She was married to Chester Hale from September 1918 until May 1931. Around the mid-1940s she remarried, to Walter Hussen. After she ended her career as a dancer she began working at the Sheraton Hotel, and started to raise French poodles. In 1950 she is reported to have been an assistant at the hotel's payroll department. Sources: Amata Grassi Papers, An inventory of her papers at the University of Illinois at Chicago, Retrieved November 2, 2005 from Chicago Sunday Times, Thursday June 22, 1950, section two-2

Administrative Information Table of Contents Scope and Content Note