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Opinion >  Column

100 years ago in Spokane: A famous actress wowed patrons as she filmed a segment at a dance hall with ‘Dad’

 (Spokane Daily Chronicle archives )
(Spokane Daily Chronicle archives )

Patrons at Whitehead’s Dancing Palace in Spokane experienced a touch of Hollywood glamour when a crew showed up to film Juanita Hansen, “serial motion picture actress,” as she danced around the ballroom.

A large crowd stayed past midnight to witness the event. Hansen was in Spokane as part of the Pantages Theater’s vaudeville bill, and arrived at Whitehead’s after her stage appearance was over.

“All eyes in the hall turned upon her,” the Spokane Daily Chronicle wrote. “Miss Hansen appeared in her favorite costume of black velvet, trimmed in black fur. She wore a large corsage of sweet peas and the familiar mane of beautiful blond hair was tucked closely beneath a small hat with pheasant plumes.”

She danced with T.Z. Watson, better known as “Dad,” a noted local dance instructor.

“A lusty-lunged director with a megaphone directed Miss Hansen and her elderly partner as they danced about between the batteries of powerful arc lights.”

From the music beat: Two famous names in classical music – violinist Jascha Heifetz and pianist Percy Grainger – were booked into the Auditorium Theater for the upcoming season.

These concerts were arranged under the auspices of the fledgling Spokane Symphony Society.

Also on this date

(From the Associated Press)

2001: The war in Afghanistan started as the United States and Britain launched air attacks against military targets and Osama bin Laden’s training camps in the wake of the Sept. 11 attacks.

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