The artist died in Italy last night (August 24), according to Nendi Pinto-Duschunsky, who is working on a documentary titled Lindsay Kemp’s Last Dance. He was 80 years old.
Writing on the film’s Facebook page, Pinto-Duschunsky wrote: “I’m so sorry to tell you Lindsay passed away last night […] It was very sudden and he had the perfect day rehearsing with his students, about to work more on his memoirs, about to go on tour. He was very happy and it was very sudden.”
It's hard to find the right words now. I'm so sorry to tell you Lindsay passed away last night, with James and…
Kemp first met Bowie as a student in 1966 and would go on to cast the musician in Pierrot In Turquoise. The star later employed Kemp to help him create and perform the stage production for ‘Ziggy Stardust’ and featured dancers from his mime troupe in the video for ‘John, I’m Only Dancing’.
Kemp also mentored Bush for years, who said he taught her to dance and went on to ask him to appear in her short musical, The Line, The Cross And The Curve. He also appeared in the films The Wicker Man and Velvet Goldmine.
Stars of the entertainment world have begun to pay tribute to Kemp. The 1975‘s Matty Healy wrote on Twitter: “Rest In Peace Lindsay Kemp you were so incredibly important to me and to the world and you will be missed dearly”.
Boy George called Kemp a “genius”, writing: “I met him when I was 17 and he was like a beautiful gay wizard buddha. R.I.P. dancing queen.”
Photographer Mick Rock said he “touched all who came in to contact with his unique and revolutionary creative personality.” “He influenced all of us,” he added. “May god bless him. There will not be another like him.”
Read those and more tributes below.
Rest In Peace Lindsay Kemp you were so incredibly important to me and to the world and you will be missed dearly ??
— ?? (@Truman_Black) August 25, 2018
Lindsay Kemp was genius. I met him when I was 17 and he was like a beautiful gay wizard buddha. R.I.P dancing queen. pic.twitter.com/vxpyryP8er
— Boy George (@BoyGeorge) August 25, 2018
I’m so sad to hear of the passing of my dear friend and early inspiration, Lindsay Kemp. He touched all who came in to contact with his unique and revolutionary creative personality. He influenced all of us. May god bless him. There will not be another like him. xM pic.twitter.com/ghiSSp9Bv6
— Mick Rock (@TheRealMickRock) August 25, 2018
Rest in peace, wonderful Lindsay Kemp. Thank you for the dazzling inspiration. ? https://t.co/k3upfHZ12a
— Gwendoline Christie (@lovegwendoline) August 25, 2018
RIP to the wonderful Lindsay Kemp. pic.twitter.com/WbvsjgYPUx
— James Dreyfus (@DreyfusJames) August 25, 2018
RIP Lindsay Kemp. Sad day. He was a massive influence on Bowie’s stagecraft and career – so hopefully @robhughesRH & I did him justice in this episode of @zofdavidbowie @DavidBowieReal #bowie #lindsaykemp pic.twitter.com/TcKfhhXVAu
— Marc Riley ⚽️?? (@marcrileydj) August 25, 2018