Nick Vanoff

Nick Vanoff (October 25, 1929 – March 20, 1991) was a dancer, producer and philanthropist.

Nick Vanoff
BornOctober 25, 1929
DiedMarch 20, 1991 (1991-03-21) (aged 61)
Los Angeles, California
OccupationDancer, producer, philanthropist
Spouse(s)Felisa Vanoff

Early lifeEdit

Vanoff was born in the village of Banitsa, Greece.[1][2] He grew up in Buffalo, New York.[1] He served in the United States Marine Corps,[1] and, shortly after, studied directing with Theodore Komisarjevsky in New York City.[1]


Vanoff started his career as a dancer in Charles Weidman's Dance Theatre. Later, he was a lead dancer for the New York City Opera.[1][2][3] He was also a dance in the Kiss Me, Kate Broadway musical.[1][2]

Vanoff was a cue card holder on The Perry Como Show and later became its associate producer.[1][2] Together with William O. Harbach, he co-produced The Tonight Show, when Steve Allen was the host.[1][2] Additionally, he created and produced the Kennedy Center Honors.[3] In the 1960s, he produced more than ten hours of television every week, including shows with Bing Crosby, Andy Williams, Don Knotts, Milton Berle and Sonny and Cher.[1][2] A few decades later, in 1985, he produced the film Eleni.[1][2]

Vanoff won a Tony Award for Best Musical in 1990 for his production of the City of Angels musical on Broadway.[1][2] Additionally, he won five Emmy Awards as a producer for: The Julie Andrews Hour in 1973, The Kennedy Center Honors in 1984, 1987 and 1989, and Julie Andrews's special, The Sound of Christmas, in 1988.[1][2] In 1990, he was named Showman of the Year by the Publicists Guild of America (which later merged into the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees).[1][2]

Vanoff was a founding director of the Foundation for the Joffrey Ballet.[1][2] He also sat on the Board of Directors of the Center Theatre Group in Los Angeles.[2]

Personal lifeEdit

Vanoff was married to Felisa Vanoff (1925-2014).[2][3] They had two sons, Nicholas and Flavio.[1][2][3] They resided in Beverly Hills, California.[3]


Vanoff died of cardiac arrest at the Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center in Los Angeles, California.[1][2][4] He was sixty-one.[1] His funeral was held at the Church of the Good Shepherd in Beverly Hills, California.[1]