The legendary Rockettes began kicking up their shoes since Russell Markert, the Rockettes’ chief choreographer, image-preserver and resident “father figure” of the famous troupe until he retired in 1971, founded the exemplary American chorus line, an exciting precision dance company with great style, flair and glamour, in 1925. Since then, we’ve been a force in entertainment and have become a beloved national treasure.
We’ve appeared at Radio City Music Hall in hundreds of stage spectaculars, and have participated in many historic and memorable events—like joining the USO and traveling abroad to entertain the troops and support wartime effort, and performing at the inauguration of the 43rd president of the United States, George W. Bush, in 2001.
Take a scroll through memory lane to see how the Rockettes are an iconic part of American history:
A Photographic History of the Rockettes
The Roxyettes, in sailor uniforms, perform in a Navy-themed show at the Roxy Theatre in the 1920s.
Throughout the 1940s, the Rockettes helped launch the USO and boost morale overseas by performing for the troops.
The Rockettes salute the men in the armed service in this naval-themed costume from 1940.
The Roxettes payed tribute to U.S. servicemen during WWII in a navy-themed dance number.
In 1945, 16 Rockettes flew to Europe to perform for U.S. troops. [Sunday News, 1945]
In July 1945, the Rockettes line the pier as they get ready to board the ship that will take them to tour with the USO. [Photo Credit: Bettmann | Getty Images]
A Radio City Music Hall press release about the Rockettes flying to Europe to perform for U.S. troops in 1945.
The Rockettes wave to fans before their USO camp show in 1945.
A troupe of eight dancers ventured out to perform for Army Air Corps, and made other special appearances in New York during WWII.
The Rockettes lend use their celebrity status to help the war effort; posing here in an ad for war bonds.
Always willing to pitch in, the Rockettes take part in a scrap metal drive during World War II.
The Rockettes wore this patriotic-themed costume in 1981, in a show called “America” at Radio City Music Hall. In tribute to the USA, a cast of 75 took the audience through a musical and visual tour of all 50 states.
The Rockettes performing at the inauguration of the 43rd president of the United States, Georges W. Bush, on January 18, 2001. [Photo Credit: Pool BASSIGNAC|BUU|amma-Rapho via Getty Images]