Sono Osato

From J-Wiki
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Sono Osato (大里 ソノ, Osato Sono, August 29, 1919 – December 26, 2018) was an American dancer and actress. She performed with ballet companies Ballets Russe de Monte-Carlo and the American Ballet Theatre. As an actress, she starred alongside Frank Sinatra in the film The Kissing Bandit.

Osato was born in Omaha, Nebraska. She was the oldest of three children of a Japanese father (Shoji Osato, 1885–1955) and an Irish-French Canadian mother (Frances Fitzpatrick, 1897–1954). Her family moved to Chicago in 1925 in order to be closer to Frances' family, and Shoji opened a photography studio there. In 1927, when she was eight, Osato's mother took her and her sister to Europe for two years; while in Monte Carlo, they attended a performance of Cléopâtre by Sergei Diaghilev's famous Ballets Russes company, which inspired Osato to start ballet classes when she returned to Chicago in late 1929. She studied with prominent dancers Berenice Holmes and Adolph Bolm.

In 1980, Osato published an autobiography titled Distant Dances. In 2006, she founded the Sono Osato Scholarship Program in Graduate Studies at Career Transition For Dancers to help former dancers finance graduate work in both the professions and the liberal arts.[15][16] In 2016, Thodos Dance Company in Chicago presented a dance production based on her life, titled Sono's Journey.


Year Title Role Notes
1948 The Kissing Bandit Bianca