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Veteran Movie, TV Choreographer Louis DaPron Dies

July 25, 1987

WESTLAKE VILLAGE, Calif. (AP) _ Choreographer and dancer Louis F. DaPron, once billed as Paramount Studio’s answer to Fred Astaire, has died. He was 74.

DaPron died in the intensive care unit of Westlake Community Hospital on Wednesday, nursing supervisor Sharon Welshymer confirmed Friday. She declined to reveal the cause.

DaPron danced and choreographed for film and television from 1935 until the 1970s while operating two dance schools in the Los Angeles area.

Born Feb. 3, 1913, in Hammond, Ind., DaPron was was 22 when he was discovered as a dancer at Hollywood’s Club Trocadero and signed by Paramount Studios, which hoped he would be its answer to Astaire.

DaPron, however, dismissed such comparisons in a 1985 interview.

″I never was a threat to Astaire,″ he said. ″I couldn’t act, and there wasn’t much hope.″

Nonetheless, he made five pictures for Paramount in 18 months. His first role was in the 1936 film ″Hideaway Girl,″ which starred Martha Raye.

In 1941, he choreographed Donald O’Connor in ″When Johnny Comes Marching Home″ for Universal Pictures, the beginning of an association with the actor- dancer that continued through 13 movies.

Others he worked with included Janet Leigh, Ken Berry, Ann Miller and the Smothers brothers.

He went to work for television in the 1950s and was nominated for an Emmy for his choreography on Milton Berle’s ″Texaco Star Theater.″ He also worked on the ″Perry Como Show″ for five years.

He is survived by his wife, Sue DaPron. Graveside services were scheduled for Tuesday.

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