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Cholly Atkins
Born Charles Sylvan Atkinson
September 13, 1913(1913-09-13)
Pratt City, Alabama, USA
Died April 19, 2003 (aged 89)
Las Vegas, Nevada, USA
Occupation Choreographer, dancer
Spouse(s) Maye Atkins (?-2003)
Dottie Saulters (1962†)
Catherine Atkins (div)

Charles “Cholly” Atkins (13 September 1913 – 19 April 2003) was an American dancer and vaudeville performer, who later became noted as the house choreographer for the various artists on the Motown label.


Born Charles Sylvan Atkinson, a native of Pratt City, Alabama, Atkins first found fame as one-half of a top vaudeville tap dancing act with partner Charles "Honi" Coles. After working as a freelance choreographer for The Miracles, Atkins was hired by Berry Gordy to work as a Motown choreographer in 1964, and set about developing the routines that would later become the trademark moves of other Motown acts like The Supremes, The Temptations, The Four Tops, Gladys Knight & The Pips and others. Atkins would, in fact, continue working with Motown artists well into the 1980s. He choreographed for non-Motown artists as well, namely the dance routines of the Sylvers during the mid-70's and also for The Cadillacs in the 50's.

In 1989, Atkins received a Tony Award for choreographing the Broadway show Black and Blue. Diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in 2003, Atkins died of the cancer on April 19, 2003 Las Vegas, Nevada at 89.


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