Bill and Elaine Moor

You are here

Bill, a clinical psychologist and former lecturer in philosophy, first saw ballet by watching Rudolf Nureyev and Margot Fonteyn on The Ed Sullivan Show.  Elaine, also a clinical psychologist and co-founder and Clinical Director of a therapeutic school for K-12 students, recalls going to see the New York City Ballet with her mother when she was a child. These early formative experiences with dance helped set the stage for a pas de deux to last a lifetime.  

The couple met in graduate school at Illinois School of Professional Psychology in the mid-’70s. Knowing of Elaine’s background in dance, Bill wanted to impress her by getting tickets for the Joffrey on tour. “That was our second date and the beginning of a 40-year devotion to each other and the Joffrey,” recounted Bill in September 2018. “Before the Joffrey moved to Chicago we could only see them during their yearly visit, but we were absolutely addicted. If you look, you can see the addiction tracks of tiny little feet tip-toeing across our souls.”

From the Joffrey’s hallmark tours to decades of subscription performances, the Moors have witnessed the company transform and they continue to build their trove of memories.

“Julianne Kepley was one of my favorite Joffrey dancers,” says Elaine. “At one time the company was selling dancers’ shoes as a fundraiser and Bill surprised me with a pair of her slippers in a display case. They now hang on my office wall and whenever I look at them I’m reminded of what an engaging, versatile, strong performer she was.”  

Bill’s favorite Company artist is Fabrice Calmels and vividly recalls his portrayal of Lar Lubovitch’s Othello. “The final scene was what Aristotle described as the purpose of tragedy, a cathartic experience that made me shudder. Tears dripped from my chin.”

From the iconic avant-garde works by Robert Joffrey and Gerald Arpino to the diverse enriching repertoire curated by Ashley Wheater, the Moors have seen it all and believe in supporting the Joffrey’s future by leaving a lasting gift in their will.

“We joined the Star Society because helping to sustain the cultural bedrock of dance, music, and drama is not an option—it is a necessity. We are the fortunate recipients of such intellectual and emotional adventures, and we understand that we are who we are in large part because large parts of us have been nourished, expanded, and maintained through the arts—in particular, The Joffrey Ballet. It speaks to the earliest and fundamental part of our understanding of ourselves and others. It permits and demands a level of self-recognition and empathy, and broadens the all-important Coleridgean capacity of ‘the willing suspension of disbelief’ that opens the doors of imagination and affection.”