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Hamptons Life

Aug 30, 2017 1:07 PMPublication: The East Hampton Press & The Southampton Press

Nicole Fosse, Daughter Of Bob Fosse And Gwen Verdon, Sells On Talmage Farm Lane

32 Talmage Farm Lane, East Hampton. COURTESY CORCORAN
Sep 1, 2017 12:12 PM

The house at 32 Talmage Farm Lane looked nice enough, and the sale price of $960,400 was modest enough not to invite scrutiny, but the name behind it looked familiar. Sure enough, the seller, Nicole Fosse, is the daughter of Bob Fosse and Gwen Verdon, Broadway legends and longtime South Fork residents. This is as good a time as any to remind readers of their remarkable careers.

First, though, it’s worth noting that Nicole Fosse herself has been in show business. Her credits include playing a dancer in “All That Jazz,” a film directed by her father; playing Christine in the screen version of “A Chorus Line”; and having a featured role in the TV series “Miami Vice.” The 3,400-square-foot house she sold in East Hampton has 4 bedrooms, 3.5 baths and is on an acre near Accabonac Harbor.

Bob Fosse has the distinction of earning more Tony Awards (eight) for choreography than anyone else in Broadway history, plus one for directing. The Chicago native began his career as a dancer, and his early stage work caught the attention of the comedy team of Dean Martin and the just-passed Jerry Lewis, which led to the signing of a film contract with the MGM studio. A dance he choreographed for the film version of “Kiss Me Kate” led to work on Broadway. Fosse had an immediate impact there as a choreographer in “The Pajama Game” and “Damn Yankees.” It was while working on the latter show that he met its Tony-winning star, Gwen Verdon, and the two went on to make the film version. They also went on to be married and have Nicole, their only child together. The five feature films Fosse directed were “Sweet Charity,” “Cabaret” (Oscar for Best Director), “Lenny,” “All That Jazz,” and “Star 80.” He died at age 60 in 1987. (Trivia tidbit: Fosse turned down an offer to direct “The King of Comedy,” which was made by Martin Scorsese starring Robert De Niro and Jerry Lewis.)

Verdon was described as “the living embodiment of Fosse’s work on Broadway.” However, she was already an established star before meeting Fosse on on “Damn Yankees,” having won her first Tony for “Can-Can.” But her rendition of “Whatever Lola Wants” in “Damn Yankees” brought down the house in both the stage and screen versions. She would go on to win a total of four Tony Awards, the last one for the musical “Redhead,” directed by Fosse. The couple legally separated in 1971 but never divorced. Verdon passed away in October 2000.

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