Twyla Tharp, 79, is an American dancer, author, and choreographer who is the founder of Twyla Tharp Dance. She is known for choreographing Deuce Coupe to the music of The Beach Boys for the Joffrey Ballet.

She merged Twyla Tharp Dance with American Ballet Theatre in 1988. Since then, ABT has premiered 16 of Twyla Tharp’s works. Tharp was awarded an honorary Doctor of Arts degree by Harvard University on 24th May 2018.

When Was Twyla Tharp Born?

Twyla Tharp was born on 1st July 1941 in Portland, Indiana, the United States of America to Lucille and William Tharp. She grew up alongside her siblings Twanette, Stanley and Stanford in Rialto, California.

Twyla Tharp is an American Dancer & ChoreographerImage Source: Sutori
Twyla Tharp is an American Dancer & Choreographer

Image Source: Sutori

She is of American nationality and has white ethnic descent. Twyla went to Pacific High School, the Vera Lynn School of Dance, and learned ballet with Beatrice Collenette. She enrolled at Pomona College and later transferred to Barnard College from she graduated with a degree in art history in 1963.

In 1963, Twyla joined the Paul Taylor Dance Company and also studied with Richard Thomas, Merce Cunningham, and Martha Graham.

What Is Her Net Worth In 2020?

According to various sources, Twyla is estimated to net worth in 7-digit figure, i.e. millions of dollars as of early 2020. Although she has not revealed the exact figure of her fortune, she surely earns thousands of dollars from her dance school.

As per various online tabloids, a dance teacher earns $23.06 per hour to $36,664 to $47,158 per year in the United States of America.

When Did Twyla Establish ‘Twyla Tharp Dance’?

She began dancing at a young age. Following her graduation, n 1965, she choreographed her first dance Tank Dive in her own dance studio Twyla Tharp which she established in 1966.

Tharp often utilizes classical music, jazz, and contemporary pop music in her work. During the time of 1971 to 1988, her dance academy toured around the world performing their original works.

In 1973, she choreographed Deuce Coupe for the Joffrey Ballet to the music of The Beach Boys. Deuce Coupe is also considered as the first-ever crossover ballet. She also choreographed Push Comes to Shove which is considered to be one of the best examples of crossover ballet.

Twyla founded Twyla Tharp DanceImage Source: Britanica
Twyla founded Twyla Tharp Dance
Image Source: Britannica

Twyla Tharp Dance merged with a classical ballet company called American Ballet Theatre in 1988. Since then, ABT has premiered 16 of Twyla’s works.

Twyla has choreographed several dances for The Royal Ballet, Paris Opera Ballet, New York City Ballet, Joffrey Ballet, Miami City Ballet, Pacific Northwest Ballet, Hubbard Street Dance, and many more.

In 2012, Twyla created a full-length ballet The Princess and the Goblin which is based in George MacDonald’s story The Princess and the Goblin. The ballet was her first one to include children and was co-commissioned by Royal Winnipeg Ballet and Atlanta Ballet and performed by both companies.

Success As An Author & Broadway Career

Tharp made her Broadway debut with Twyla Tharp Dance performance in When We Were Very Young followed by The Catherine Wheel at the Winter Garden.

Tharp is popular for her crossover balletImage Source: Dance Interactive
Tharp is popular for her crossover ballet
Image Source: Dance Interactive

In 2005, she opened a new show The Times They Are a-Changin’ at The Old Globe Theatre in San Diego. The musical became the highest-grossing show and the highest ticket sales as of March 2006.

Some of her film work credits are Hair, Ragtime, White Nights, Amadeus, and I’ll Do Anything.

  • Moreover, as an author, she has penned 4 books so far:
  • Push Comes To Shove (1992)
  • The Creative Habit (2003)
  • The Collaborative Habit (2009)
  • Keep It Moving: Lessons for the Rest of Your Life (2019)

Who Is Twyla Tharp’s Husband?

The 79-year-old dancer was married to a man named Peter Young, a painter. They first met at Pomona College and started dating eventually. The couple exchanged their wedding vows in 1962, however, their marriage ended two years later in 1964.

Twyla married her first husband Peter Young in 1962Image Source: Gallery Wendinorris
Twyla married her first husband Peter Young in 1962

Image Source: Gallery Wendi Norris

She then got married to artist Bob Huot and shared a son named Jesse (born in 1971). Unfortunately, Tharp’s second marriage ended shortly as well.