Cassen Gardner from West Jordan heard the Rockettes were going to be at the Gateway this morning, so she made sure she was the first in line- bright and early, 6 a.m. Her father grew up in Boston, and his mom took him to New York to see Rockettes when he was a kid after about three years of saving money. He never forgot the show and told his kids all about the dancers while they grew up.
"There was nobody here when we came, so we just went and got breakfast then came back." she says. "We were still the first in line." She brought her daughter Kendry and brother Jonathan. "I've never seen them before," she says.
But now she'll also be the first in line for the show in November.
The first 100 people to show up at the Gateway this morning for the Rockettes show were given vouchers for one of the performances at the Maverik Center from Nov. 26 to 29. The appearance was to get as many people as possible to kick along with the dancers - hopefully they'll upload their photos to the Rockette's online kick counter. Once the troupe reaches one million kicks, kids across the country will also get to see the show for free thanks to the Garden of Dreams Foundation.
The stage was set on the grass near the fountain, and the Rockettes ran a little behind because of their appearance on Good Things Utah (Jeremy is always late when he's on that show, too).
"I just came here for a birthday present and saw all this Christmas stuff set up," says Jessica Austin who came with her daughter Austyn. She came in her pajamas. As soon as she realized the Rockettes would be there, she ran home to change and get in line.
Talese Hunt, a Sandy native living in SLC, led the three other Rockettes onstage and introduced herself to the crowd. Nobody was allowed on the grass, and everyone was starting to get wet (pushed back into the fountain). So, all the kids were let on the lawn to learn first-hand how to kick like a Rockette.
They took the stage in black Rockette T-shirts and dance bottoms. All of a sudden, it actually did feel like Christmas in August. Too bad they weren't selling merch - I know some people who'd do anything for one of those shirts. The ladies were not as tall as I thought they'd be. I'd say about 5'7".
The ladies hyped up the crowd and the let 'em loose - eye-high. Knee up first, then kick. Beautiful!
The Rockettes started their shows more than 80 years ago, and they've been the star attraction of Radio City since. Click here for your tix.
Tomorrow I'm going to interview the four Rockettes and post the story here. So, make sure to check back. It takes more than 165 people stage the Radio City Rockettes show in NYC, but if today is any indication only takes four to hype up an SLC crowd.