Martha Swope, famed photographer of some of the nation’s top dancers and actors, was born February 22, 1928, in Tyler, Texas.

She began her career one day in 1957, when choreographer Jerome Robbins invited her to photograph a day of rehearsals for his production, West Side Story. She soon became one of the most prolific photographers of Broadway theatre rehearsals and productions for more than 30 years.

Swope died of Parkinson’s disease January 12, 2017. In her photo above of Irene Sharaff and Lee Becker in rehearsals for West Side Story in 1957, she’s captured herself in the mirror as well. Click HERE to visit New York Public Library’s collection of her curated digital images online.

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