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Jerry Jackson Papers (MS-00573)

Abstract

The Jerry Jackson Papers, 1953 to 2009, contain materials related to Jackson's career in entertainment as a director, producer, choreographer, writer, lyricist, and costume designer. Jackson's work on Folies-Bergère at the Tropicana Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada is the most extensive show represented. Materials also include documentation of Jackson's other stage, film, and television productions. The papers include general production information, correspondence, costume design drawings, wardrobe notes, choreography notes, sheet music, music scores, lyrics, budgetary information, production photographs, show outlines and rundowns, set designs, scripts and publicity materials.

Date
1953-2009
bulk 1975-2009
Extent
12.64 Cubic Feet (9 boxes, 12 oversize boxes, and 10 flat files)
50.76 Linear Feet
Resource Type
Papers
Creator/Contributor Links
Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Materials in this collection may be protected by copyrights and other rights. See Reproductions and Use on the UNLV Special Collections website for more information about reproductions and permissions to publish.

Collection Type
Scope and Contents

The Jerry Jackson Papers, 1953 to 2009, contain materials related to Jackson's career in entertainment as a director, producer, choreographer, writer, lyricist, and costume designer. The papers include general production information, correspondence, costume design drawings, wardrobe notes, choreography notes, sheet music, music scores, lyrics, budgetary information, production photographs, show outlines and rundowns, scripts and publicity materials. A large number of set designs from notable art directors Charles Lisanby, William Morris, and Winn Strickland are also included. Costume designs by Nolan Miller are also found in the collection.

While Jackson's work on Folies-Bergère at the Tropicana Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada is the most extensive production represented, other stage, film, and television productions are also included. These include numerous shows in Las Vegas, the original Broadway staging of Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, and productions at the Sandcastle Theater in Guam and Conrad International Hotel and Jupiter's Casino in Australia.

Biographical / Historical Note

Born January 14, 1936 in Tulsa, Oklahoma, Jerry Reese Jackson has worked as a show producer, director, costume designer, choreographer, lyricist, and composer. In Las Vegas, Nevada, Jackson is best known for his work on the Folies-Bergère at the Tropicana Hotel and Casino where he served as artistic director, choreographer, and later as costume designer for nearly thirty-five years, beginning in 1975 and ending with the show's closure in 2009.

Jackson was raised in Bristow, Oklahoma and his career began shortly after his high school graduation in 1954. Jackson moved to Hollywood, California to study ballet, jazz, and modern dance. That same year he enrolled at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) where he majored in art with a minor in music. He spent his summer breaks at UCLA dancing in movie musicals as well as productions at the Desert Inn in Las Vegas, Nevada. During his Junior year, Jackson spent his evenings dancing at the Moulin Rouge Supper Club in Hollywood. After graduation, Jackson continued to work as a dancer and choreographer. He became one of two permanent dancers for two seasons (1962-1963) on the Danny Kaye Show for CBS television, and later became Hermes Pan's assistant choreographer collaborating on many projects including the film Finian's Rainbow starring Fred Astaire. In 1966, Jackson danced with Angela Landsbury at the 35th Academy Awards ceremony.

In 1966, Jackson was asked to choreograph the 100th anniversary of the French revue Folies-Bergère in Paris, France. After his work on the Paris production, Jackson transitioned to the Las Vegas production at the Tropicana Hotel and Casino as the assistant choreographer to Hermes Pan. In 1975 for the 15th edition of the revue, Jackson became the creator, director and choreographer. For the 16th edition he also took on costume design responsibilities as well as wrote original music and lyrics. He continued operation in all these roles until Folies-Bergère closed in Las Vegas in 2009. His Folies responsibilities also included work on productions in Puerto Rico, a Royal Performance in London, England for Queen Elizabeth II, and a performance for President Ferdinand Marcos in the Philippines.

In addition to Folies-Bergère Jackson was associated with many other stage productions in Las Vegas. He worked as a choreographer on Flesh at Caesar's Palace (1969-1970), Vive Les Girls at the Dunes Hotel (1970-1971), and Funny Farm at the Aladdin Hotel (1970-1972) where he also was a writer. Jackson created the show Pin-ups (1974-1979) at the Sahara Hotel. Jackson was the writer, director, choreographer, costume designer, lyricist, and composer for Fire and Ice (1980-1984) and Hitz (1988-1990) at the Hacienda Hotel. Jackson directed and choreographed acts for many performers in Las Vegas including Goldie Hawn, Abbe Lane, Sergio Franchi, and Bobby Gentry.

Outside of Las Vegas Jackson was involved with many productions in the United States and internationally. He staged and choreographed the Broadway production for Seven Brides for Seven Brothers which played several American cities before its Broadway premiere in 1983. Jackson also worked as a director, writer, choreographer, composer/lyricist, and costume designer at the Princess Casino in the Grand Bahamas (1983-2000), Conrad International Hotel and Jupiter's Casino in Queensland, Australia (1985-1989), and Sandcastle Theater in Guam (1991-2004).

Jerry Jackson is retired from the entertainment industry and currently resides in Los Angeles, California.

For a more extensive list of credits please refer to the following chronology.

1936
Born in Tulsa, Oklahoma
1954
Enrolled at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA);
Chorus dancer: Deep in My Heart, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM) film
1956
Dancer: Can-Can, Civic Playhouse, Los Angeles, California
approximately 1960
Graduated from UCLA with a Bachelor's degree in art and minor in music
1962
Company Manager, dancer: A Night in Paradise, Seattle World's Fair
1962-1963
Dancer: Danny Kaye Show, CBS television
1964
Dancer: Studio Uno, Italy
1966
Dancer: Academy Awards ceremony, Los Angeles, California;
Choreographer: 100th Anniversary of the Folies-Bergère, Paris, France;
Assistant choreographer to Hermes Pan: Folies-Bergère, Las Vegas, Nevada
1968
Assistant choreographer to Hermes Pan: Finian's Rainbow, Warner Brothers/Seven Arts film
1969-1970
Choreographer: Flesh, Caesar's Palace, Las Vegas, Nevada
1970
Creator, director, choreographer: Va Va Va Voom, Sahara Hotel, Las Vegas
1970-1971
Choreographer: Vive Les Girls, Dunes Hotel, Las Vegas
1970-1972
Director, choreographer, writer: Funny Farm, Aladdin Hotel, Las Vegas, Nevada
1971
Creator, director, choreographer: Hot Flashes, Sahara Hotel, Las Vegas, Nevada
1972
Creator, director, choreographer: Right-On, Sahara Hotel, Las Vegas, Nevada;
Staging, choreography: Super Bowl Comedy Special, CBS television;
Staging, choreography: Promises, Promises, Music Circus, Sacramento, California;
Staging, choreography: Man of La Mancha, Music Circus, Sacramento, California
1973
Writer, choreographer: Line Direct, French television;
Director, choreographer: Goldie Hawn act, Hilton Hotel, Las Vegas, Nevada
1973-1975
Writer, choreographer: Tony Orlando and Dawn, CBS television
1973-1976
Director, choreographer: Casino du Liban, Beirut, Lebanon
1974
Creator, director, choreographer: Pin-ups, Sahara Hotel, Las Vegas, Nevada
1975
Choreographer: Femmes de Paris, Melodyland in Anaheim, California
1975-1977
Creator, director, choreography: Folies-Bergère, Americana Hotel, Puerto Rico
1975-1983
Creator, director, choreography: Folies-Bergère, 15th edition, Tropicana Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas, Nevada
1976
Creator, director, choreographer: Pin-ups '76, Sahara Hotel, Las Vegas, Nevada;
Writer, director, choreographer, select music and lyrics: Cilla at the Palace, Victoria Palace, London, England
1976-1978
Writer, director, choreographer, costume designer, set designer, original music and lyrics: C'est Fantastique, Princess Hotel, Acapulco, Mexico
1976-1979
Director, choreographer, co-writer: Casino de Paris 80th Anniversary, Paris, France
1977
Writer, director, choreographer, select music and lyrics: Silver Jubilee, Victoria Palace, London, England;
Creator, director, choreographer: Pin-ups '77, Sahara Hotel, Las Vegas, Nevada;
Director, choreographer: Abbe Lane act, Las Vegas;
Choreographer: Las Vegas 7th Annual Awards Ceremony, NBC television;
Choreographer: Teatro Dieci, RAI television, Rome, Italy;
Creator, director, choreographer: Folies-Bergère command performance for President Ferdinand Marcos, Manila, Philippines
1978
Staging, choreographer: Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, Music Hall, Dallas, Texas;
Director, choreographer: Jim Stafford act, Aladdin Hotel, Las Vegas, Nevada;
Choreographer: Wonderful World of Disney 25th Anniversary, NBC television;
Creator, director, choreographer: Pin-ups 2001, Sahara Hotel, Las Vegas, Nevada;
Choreographer: The Godfather: Part II, Paramount Pictures film
1978-1979
Director, choreographer: Bobby Gentry act, Aladdin Hotel, Las Vegas, Nevada
1979
Creator, director, choreographer: Pin-ups Goes to the Movies, Sahara Hotel, Las Vegas, Nevada;
Creator, Director, choreographer: Paris Amour, Americana Hotel, Bal Harbour, Florida
1979-1982
Writer, director, choreographer, costume designer, original lyrics and music: Vive la Difference, Princess Hotel, Acapulco, Mexico
1980
Writer, choreographer: Joan Rivers Comedy Hour, Showtime television special;
Creator, director, choreographer: Rawhide, Sahara Hotel, Las Vegas, Nevada
1980-1984
Writer, director, choreographer, costume designer, original lyrics and music: Fire and Ice, Hacienda Hotel, Las Vegas, Nevada
1981
Choreographer: Vegas Circus, NBC television;
Choreographer: Jimmy Durante Variety Awards, NBC television;
Director, choreographer: Let Me Off Uptown cabaret, Tropicana Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas, Nevada
1982
Director, choreographer: Sergio Franchi act, Desert Inn, Las Vegas, Nevada;
Staging, choreographer: Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, Los Angeles, California
1983
Staging, choreographer: Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, Alvin Theater, New York City, New York
1983-1986
Producer, writer, director, choreographer, costume designer, original lyrics and music: Soiree, Princess Casino, Freeport, Grand Bahamas
1983-1997
Creator, director, choreographer, costume designer, original music and lyrics: Folies-Bergère, 16th edition, Tropicana Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas, Nevada
1985
Choreographer: Perfect, Columbia Pictures Corporation film
1985-1987
Writer, director, choreographer, costume designer, original music and lyrics: Starz, Conrad International Hotel and Jupiter's Casino, Queensland, Australia
1986-1987
Producer, writer, director, choreographer, costume designer, original music and lyrics: Soiree II, Princess Casino, Freeport, Grand Bahamas
1987-1989
Producer, writer, director, choreographer, costume designer, original music and lyrics: Confetti, Princess Casino, Freeport, Grand Bahamas;
Writer, director, choreographer, costume designer, original music and lyrics: Galaxies, Conrad International Hotel and Jupiter's Casino, Queensland, Australia
1988-1990
Writer, director, choreographer, costume designer, original music and lyrics: Hitz, Hacienda Hotel, Las Vegas, Nevada
1989
Command performance of the Las Vegas production of Folies-Bergère performed for HRM Queen Elizabeth II, Palladium, London, England
1990-2000
Producer, writer, director, choreographer, costume designer, original music and lyrics: Night Life, Princess Casino, Freeport, Grand Bahamas
1991-1995
Writer, director, choreographer, costume designer, original lyrics and music: Glitz, Sandcastle Theater, Guam
1996-2004
Writer, director, choreographer, costume designer, original lyrics and music: C'est Fantastique, Sandcastle Theater, Guam
1997-2009
Creator, director, choreographer, costume designer, set designer, original music and lyrics: Folies-Bergère, 17th edition, Tropicana Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas, Nevada
2001
Actor, lyrics, choreography, and select costume design and music: Elvira's Haunted Hills, Media Pro Pictures/Queen B Productions film
2003
Costume designer: Aretha Franklin concert, Carnegie Hall, New York City, New York
2005
Documentary subject: Creative Compulsive, German television
2007
Choreographer: NBA All Star basketball game, Thomas and Mack Center, University of Las Vegas, Nevada
Arrangement

The collection is arranged into five series:

I. Personal papers, photographs, and designs, 1953-2005;

II. Folies-Bergère production papers, designs, and photographs, 1960-2009;

III. Professional work in the United States: show production materials, 1962-2003;

IV. Professional work outside the United States: show production materials, 1976-2003;

V. 2017 Addition, 1956-2009;

VI. 2019 Addition, 1975, 1980, 1983, 2003.

Related Materials

The following resources may provide additional information related to the materials in this collection:

Jackson, Jerry. Interview, 2015 February 12. OH-02277. Audio recording. Oral History Research Center, Special Collections and Archives, University Libraries, University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Las Vegas, Nevada.

Preferred Citation

Jerry Jackson Papers, 1953-2009. MS-00573. Special Collections and Archives, University Libraries, University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Las Vegas, Nevada.

EAD ID
US::NvLN::MS00573
Immediate Source of Acquisition

Materials were donated in 2010, 2011, 2017, and 2019 by Jerry Jackson; accession numbers 2010-016, 2011-022, 2017-015, and 2019-024.

Processing Information

Material was processed in 2014 and 2015 by Karla Irwin. Costume design drawings and photographs were encapsulated in mylar and set design drawings, originally rolled and folded, were flattened by the Preservation Lab. Karla Irwin wrote the finding aid and entered the data into ArchivesSpace. Material from the 2017-015 addition was foldered and reboxed by Maggie Bukowski and Tammi Kim. In 2018, as part of an archival backlog elimination project, Sarah Jones revised the collection description to bring it into compliance with current professional standards. In 2019 Tammi Kim created a box summary and updated the finding for the 2019-024 accession.

Finding Aid Description Rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
English