High Kicks

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    By the late 1800’s Johns troupes were dancing in ballet and pantomime performances all over the world. At this time John was very excited by his conception of the Mystic Hussars routine where the girls dressed as cavaliers when performing their dance routine, this was considered quite revolutionary at the time as the girls were connected to an electrical supply and their swords lit up in the dark. John went on to conceive a simple notion, as the girls were kicking; he had them link their arms around each others waists. The proximity helped the girls work well together and at last he was able to achieve absolute precision in dance. His dream had come true. There is speculation in the family as to whether he adopted the kicking and headdress after watching the Lipizzaner Stallions on one of his many trips abroad. It was this idea that was to really make his name in dance for posterity. He went on to perfect a high kicking dance for “Les Folies-Bergère”, Paris, using eight girls, called the called the Pony Trot that would be the start of all modern kick routines and the routine that every Tiller Girl had to learn as their first dance.

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