Fishnets, gangsters, vaudeville and. . . Balanchine? One of these things may not seem like the others, but dancers know it’s a killer combination. The 1936 Broadway musical Rodgers & Hart’s On Your Toes combines all this, plus song-and-dance tap numbers, and it's currently being reprised at New York City Center May 8-12.
With its mix of gangsters, vaudeville and ballet, On Your Toes was the first major Broadway musical to incorporate classical dance—courtesy of George Balanchine. One of the 1936 show's numbers is the much-beloved Slaughter on Tenth Avenue, often performed by itself as a standalone ballet.