Phillip Richardson – Dancing Times

This blog post is part of a report in The Link, describing the party given to celebrate the 21st birthday of the Ginner-Mawer School of Dance and Drama. It refers to Phillip Richardson (1875-1963) who had an important part to play during the evening. 

It is interesting to note that there was a clear and long-standing relationship between the Ginner-Mawer School and the Editor of The Dancing Times, Phillip Richardson (the article spells his name with one L, but Wikipedia spells it with two Ls – Phillip).  

It would seem that it was Phillip Richardson who suggested to Ruby Ginner that she form the Greek Dance Association (GDA).  

Ginner goes on to point out that the Ginner-Mawer School was the ‘cradle’ of the GDA which shows how important the School was in the development of dance in Britain and Irene Mawer’s mime technique was a fundamental part of the curriculum – one couldn’t learn Greek Dance without also learning mime.

Here is the section from The Link, October 1937, pp.20-23 (the author of the article is not known).

Owing to the recent illness of Miss Fogerty, the chair was kindly taken by Mr P J S Richardson, the Editor of The Dancing Times.  After proposing His Majesty The King, he thanked the Old Girls of the G-M School for being more hospitable than Old Boys, who, he said, would not let any of the opposite sex in to their dinners, unless they were going to give an entertainment to the Old Boys afterwards.” (!!!!! Surely this can not mean what it appears to mean.  Can it?)

(Richardson) praised the school for its esprit-de-corps, nowadays regarded rather slightingly by those who deprecated the ‘old school tie,’ but a quality absolutely essential to the happiness and success of any community and its work.”

Miss Ginner gave a speech which included the following:  “In 1923, at the suggestion of Mr Phillip Richardson and with the help of a group of enthusiastic teachers, I founded the Greek Dance Association which has helped to carry the Greek Dance from its cradle of the GM School out to all the world.”  

Later she also added:  “I would like to thank our Chairman, Mr Richardson, for all he has done in these twenty-one years in making our work and our School known to the world through the Dancing Times.”

According to Wikipedia, in 1920 Richardson founded The Association of Teachers of Operatic Dancing of Great Britain – which is now the Royal Academy of Dance, and in 1950 he founded the International Council of Ballroom Dancing – now called the World Dance Council.

Author: Janet Fizz Curtis

Janet Fizz Curtis is trained in the Irene Mawer Method of Mime and Movement and is now writing a book about the life of Irene Mawer.

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