Danny Daniels was a tap dancer, choreographer, and entrepreneur. The collection consists primarily of material from his long
career on stage and in film and television. There are also records from his eponymous dance school, as well as other business
ventures. There is a small amount of personal material, including his collection of theater programs spanning five decades.
Danny Daniels was born Daniel Giani, Jr. on Oct. 25, 1924 in Albany, NY and had an extensive career as a dancer, choreographer,
director, and teacher. A childhood tap dance prodigy, he made his film debut as a featured dancer in
The Star Maker (Paramount, 1939). He later danced leading roles on Broadway and elsewhere. In 1952, Daniels collaborated with composer Morton
Gould on the work “Tap Dance Concerto,” in which the sound of the dancer's feet is treated as a musical instrument. As a choreographer,
Daniels worked on several Broadway musicals, as well as several productions in Los Angeles and at other regional theaters.
He was nominated for Tony Awards for
High Spirits (1964),
Walking Happy (1967), and
Annie Get Your Gun (1967). In 1984 he won the award for
The Tap Dance Kid. He also worked extensively in film and television, perhaps most memorably as the choreographer for
Pennies from Heaven (MGM, 1981). Daniels was also an entrepreneur, marketing toys, founding a dance school, and selling dance instruction video
tapes by mail. He worked as recently as 2004, choreographing and having a cameo appearance in the short film
36.2 linear feet
(61 boxes, 3 cartons, 2 shoe boxes, 16 flat boxes, 2 oversize flat boxes)
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