Meet the World’s Oldest Dancer

by on March 11, 2015

   Eileen Kramer is one of the oldest choreographers in the world. She is still creating dance pieces and starring in them at 100 years old. “Everything happens at 100, everything changes.” Her message is transcendent, beyond motivational: live in the world of your making. The real world may be fantasy, or a fantasy world may be the best reality. But if a woman who has danced all her life can continue dancing and making art after seeing a century, then there is hope for the rest of us.

  Beginning at 22, Eileen danced in various companies throughout Australia, and eventually moved to India where she continued with another company. She made her way back round to Australia only last year at 99, previously residing in West Virginia and London before that.

   “I’m not a highly acrobatic dancer,” she says. “I’m more of a soft dancer.” She begins each morning with strength conditioning and barre, as well as a cappuccino and a croissant.

   To watch her very pillowy movements is mesmerizing. She swishes around the studio, all swaying limbs like a willow tree. Her dance performance include several other dancers from a rural arts program she attended, who have contributed pieces as well. It is a showcase of her life’s story and its evolution as a 100 year old dancer.

   “Dancing; it psychologically strengthens me” says Eileen. “I like looking at myself in the mirror. I like people to tell me that what I did was beautiful.”