Dancing is so wonderful. Once they start the music, your whole day, if it's been rotten, seems to melt away. You get carried away in the tune that you're moving to. It's a marvelous catharsis, to be able to get on top and tap dance.
I didn't smoke. I didn't smoke then, and I don't smoke now. We worked every day - that keeps you in pretty good shape. We could go for a long time in one take. You had to be in good shape with Gene Kelly.
You see, as far as the man's personality goes, there's no one who can touch Fred Astaire. He's unique.
Short people have long faces, and long people have short faces. Big people have little humor, and little people have no humor at all.
I'd like to thank the Academy for my lifetime achievement award that I will eventually get.
I`m basically a hoofer, a tap dancer. I was always very good from the waist down, moving with the feet... I became what`s known as a total dancer, using the entire body in order to express what you want to express in tap dancing and line.
They put me in a harness, like a horse, to learn the back somersault. It was weird up there when I put on that harness for the first time. The courage came with practice.
I can picture things, like a painter would, though Im not good at painting, either.
Remember, if you do the same act for 20, 30 years it gets a little boring unless you've got something else going for you... And the orchestra really kept you going. They'd laugh at all your jokes, even if they'd been hearing them for the last 30 years.
It's so wonderful... if your whole day is rotten, once they start the music, it seems to melt away.
That is the godawful thing about television today. Performers don't have any place to hit and miss. You're either in or you're out; you don't have a chance to become good at your craft. If you make three pictures in a row and they don't go over, you're out of the business.
I was born and raised to entertain other people. I've heard laughter and applause and known a lot of sorrow. Everything about me is based on show business - I think it will bring me happiness. I hope so.
I'm not a good choreographer: I can't remember what I put down.
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