Though many years have passed, including a World War, these two reunite for an amazing Tour de force performance! Spectacular choreography, glamour and a questionable outcome.
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41 Replies to “George Raft and Carole Lombard – Bailando Bolero!!”

  1. There is an uncanny similarity of the choreography, spins, and lifts in this performance to the 1984 Olympic Ice Dance Gold Medal performance by Torvill and Dean. Both are similar in duration, and both arrangements of the score are nearly identical. Discounting the introduction in the ice dance, which did not figure in the 4 minute 10 second allowance because the clock was not started until Jane's blades touched the ice–the Raft and Lombard performance, without preliminaries, clocks around 3 minutes 10 seconds. Both performances begin cheek to cheek, with the lady moving first around the man, and end with both performers on the floor/ice. Many of the lifts and spins have the man holding the lady by the shoulders in quick changes from vertical to horizontal and back to close contact. Similarities notwithstanding, each performance is unique and a remarkable example of high style and excellence for its era, and perhaps longer. One wonders whether this performance sparked Christopher Dean's imagination. At the next Olympics, the pair re-created an Astaire and Rodgers number, "Puttin' on the Ritz", for their free dance.

  2. What a spectacular dance number! Carole Lombard was so beautiful, and I've been a George Raft fan for years, but just now realized how much he favored Rudolph Valentino in these early films!

  3. My Mother adored George Raft and I didn't know until she died that she had a small photo of him in her wallet and someone once said I looked like him! No she never actually had met him.

  4. George Raft, James Cagney, Humphrey Bogart figured large in my formative years watching movies in my local cinema. What a trio they were. Throw in the likes of Randolph Scott, Joel McCrea, Gary Cooper, Errol Flynn, and you see one happy childhood. All big movie stars, and all my heroes.

  5. Oh, and to Guy Veloz…what an incredible and amazing privilege to be connected to film history in this way…at 65 I have gone back to university to study the history of film, always my life long passion…all these films need to be recognized and respected for their valuable contribution to the industry…

  6. Absolutely love this film…one of my all time favorites…doubles were used for some of the dance sequence but it does not at all take away from the sensual and seductive dance number or the performances of Raft and Lombard…their onscreen chemistry in this film was amazing!

  7. Mr. Veloz! Honored to hear from you, and at this point I'd like to consider the mystery solved! It's so exciting that they knew one another as kids, possibly in "Hell's Kitchen!" This clip has received many comments. One of my replies had to do with my Grandmother watching George dance for nickels on Staten Island, at South Beach. I'm originally from there. Gotta look for "Cavalcade of Dance!" Would love to hear more from you about your parents and their amazing talents! Thanks so much!

  8. Yes, too little is known of this blacked out era of American show biz history. Clifton Webb, indeed a prominent half of his live ballroom dance partnering with, I think Barbara Bennet, sister of Constance Bennet, of that glorious family, a very important presence on the American team dancing history of those magical years from the late 20's to the late 1940's, now mostly lost to history.

  9. Allow me to humbly cut in here, but my parents, Veloz and Yolanda, "doubled" for Raft in the long shots for both "Bolero" and "Rhumba", though it was agreed that this should remain a trade secret for a long while. My father, Frank, received credit for the choreography, was good friends with Raft. Both came from the same dark parts of the old West Side of Manhattan, both dazzled by Rudolph Valentino's famed tango, lovingly recreated by Veloz and Yolanda in "Cavalcade of Dance" sans spurs.

  10. Well, color me grateful for your response! I try to answer every post I receive, but avoid the evil ones. It seems that YT is in the process of upgrading their entire "reply" and message section for the better! Will get back to you soon, and thanks again!

  11. If I've answered this before, please forgive me. I posted this, and can't say for sure, but believe you're right about his death at the end. Though kind of a "cad" in the early part of the film, he seems to redeems himself towards the end. I think the strenuous pace of this dance actually brings about his demise. Thanks so much for writing. It's still one of the most erotically beautiful scenes ever filmed. Ravel's "Bolero" certainly added to the wonder!

  12. Still romantic and seductive after all of these years. Fantastic! To Cuban Pete, at end of clip did you notice his manager react, as though something was wrong. Camera goes back to Raft and he looks like he is about to pass out. My memory is telling me he dies at the end of the film. Certainly could be wrong.

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