Thalia Mara

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Thalia Mara
Thalia Mara.jpg
Elizabeth Simons[1]

June 28, 1911
Chicago, Illinois
DiedOctober 8, 2003(2003-10-08) (aged 92)
OccupationBallet educator
Arthur Mahoney
(m. 1939; separated 1964)

Thalia Mara Mahoney (née Elizabeth Simons; June 28, 1911 – October 8, 2003) was an American ballet dancer and educator who authored 11 books on the subject.[2]


Mara was born Elizabeth Simons in Chicago in 1911, the daughter of Russian Jewish parents Louis B. Simons and Lillian Newman Simons, who emigrated in 1906.[1][2][3] After beginning her performance career in Chicago, Mara traveled to Paris in 1927. After living in New York in the 1960s, Mara moved to Jackson, Mississippi, where she helped found the USA International Ballet Competition. She authored eleven books on ballet, as well as founded the Thalia Mara Arts International Foundation.[4]


In recognition of her contributions, in 1994 the Jackson, Mississippi Municipal Auditorium was renamed Thalia Mara Hall.[5]

Another performance space, the Thalia Hall in the Pilsen Historic District located at 18th Street and Allport Street on Chicago's Lower West Side, is also named for her.


  • Mara, Thalia (1987). The Language of Ballet: A Dictionary. Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton Book Company. Retrieved 2015-04-15.


  1. ^ a b Social Security Death Index, 1935-2014. Social Security Administration.
  2. ^ a b Dunning, Jennifer (October 11, 2003). "Thalia Mara, 92, Ballet Educator". The New York Times. Retrieved July 7, 2017.
  3. ^ 1930 United States Federal Census; Chicago, Cook, Illinois; Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration.
  4. ^ Kirkpatrick, Marlo Carter (2013). It happened in Mississippi. Globe Pequot Press. p. 111. ISBN 978-0-7627-7192-9.
  5. ^ "Thalia Mara Hall". Jackson, Mississippi. Retrieved 2015-03-14.

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