From the turbulence of the mid 1960's in Oakland, CA., George Latimer traveled to Memphis, TN. His sexual ambivalence in tow, he encountered the segregated world of dance in the racially polarized city. As assistant to the director of the Memphis Civic Ballet, the regional ballet company of the mid-south, he soon became disenchanted with the politics and the mind set of the Old Memphis, and he was inspired to create a company that represented his heartfelt philosophies that dance was for everyone. Ballet South was born. Nureyev, Baryshnikov, and the Pavs were among the celebrities who graced the stage of his fledgling and, at the time, controversial company. In 1989 he returned to Oakland with Jeff Stuart, his lifelong partner, where they continue to contribute to their passion for the ballet.
George Latimer hails from the San Francisco Bay Area where his early experiences as a dancer placed him in the realm of great ballet artists and musicians. Influenced early by the fantasy world of Hollywood movies and an unusual family background, he had colorful adventures in 1960s San Francisco, then moved to Memphis, Tennessee to become an entrepreneur. He brought the likes of Nureyev, Baryshnikov, and stars of the New York City Ballet and the American Ballet Theater to the South. He won a Martin Luther King Award for his contribution to racial integration in the arts as director of his Memphis ballet company, Ballet South. In this funny, moving, and nostalgic trip through time and the American dance scene, Latimer candidly recounts his entertaining adventures with talented artists, gives his take on newsworthy events of the day, and tells of living through the Loma Prieta earthquake and surviving the devastating Oakland fire of 1991.