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Directed by Jennifer Lin

Cast: George Lee

Filmmakers in attendance. Film program will be followed by Q&A.

George Lee is an 89-year-old blackjack dealer in the noisy heart of Las Vegas whose remarkable life as a dancer has been forgotten until now. It’s a uniquely American story about  a refugee from Shanghai who made history as a teenage sensation in George Balanchine’sl The Nutcracker, originating the Tea role for the New York City Ballet in its 1954 premiere. He battled hardship to become an Asian American pioneer on Broadway, appearing in the original cast of Flower Drum Song. We hear from George in reminiscences dotted with cameos: Balanchine, Gene Kelly, Ed Sullivan, Debbie Reynolds, Carol Channing. Looming above it all was his mother, who told him he must be “ten times better” than the white dancers he’d be competing against.
Ten Times Better is a tale of talent and perseverance in the face of hardship, and a reminder of the extraordinary stories behind the nameless faces all around us.

Writer: Jennifer Lin
Producer: Jon Funabiki, Cory Lin Stieg, Jennifer Lin
Executive Producer: Helen Funai Erickson, Peter & Grace Lee Baughan
Director of Photography: Paul Van Haute
Editor: Rachel Sophia Stewart
Composer: Andrew Yee
Sound Designer: Dan LaPorta
Music: Josu Gallastegui

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