Lois SmithLois Irene Smith, ballet dancer, teacher, choreographer (b at Vancouver, BC 8 Oct 1929; d at Sechelt, BC 22 Jan 2011). Lois Smith began her dance training at the BC School of Ballet at the age of 10, later studying intensively with Rosemary Deveson and Mara McBirney. She began to dance professionally with Theatre Under the Stars in Vancouver and spent 4 years dancing in musical productions with the Los Angeles Civic Light Opera Company.
Lois Smith married dancer David ADAMS in 1950 and both were invited by Celia Franca to join the newly founded NATIONAL BALLET OF CANADA in 1951 as principal dancers. Her beautiful line and stage presence were immediately noted by critics and the public and within a few years she was widely recognized as Canada's first prima ballerina. Throughout her 18 years with the National Ballet she was featured in a variety of roles which ranged from the psychological/dramatic works of Antony Tudor and Walter Gore to the full-length classical ballets for which she was most acclaimed. Her dance partners included David Adams, Earl KRAUL and Eric BRUHN.
Lois Smith left the National Ballet in 1969 because of an injury to form the Lois Smith Dance School in Toronto, which was later integrated into the Performing Arts Program of George Brown College. During her time at the college she choreographed a number of works and co-founded the Dance Company of Ontario. She retired in 1988 to live on the Sunshine Coast in British Columbia.
Lois Smith was awarded several honours and medals for her contribution to Canadian dance and was invested as an Officer of the Order of Canada in 1980. In 1998 she was recognized by the BC Hall of Fame for her contribution to the culture and entertainment in British Columbia. A bronze star with her name on it was laid on Granville Street near the ORPHEUM THEATRE in Vancouver.