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Get ready to get moving, because this is one video that will definitely have you reaching for your dancing shoes — or maybe a hanky. Probably both.
Alice Barker entertained plenty of people with her chorus line routines during the Harlem Renaissance of the 1930s. And now, thanks to pal David Shuff (and film footage collected by Mark Cantor), the 102-year-old has been able to entertain herself with those old dances.
Shuff, who regularly brings his therapy dog to the nursing home where Barker resides, had long heard of her past glory days as a dancer in movies, ads and onstage at legendary clubs like the Apollo and Cotton Club. So once he got his hands on vintage clips of her performances, he brought the videos straight to her.
"Making me wish I could get out of this bed and do it all over again," Barker said in a newly uploaded video that was shot by Shuff in 2014.
The former hoofer beamed and moved her arms to the music as she watched her old routines.
"I used to often say to myself, 'I am being paid to do something that I enjoy doing, and I would do it for free,'" she recalled. "It just felt so good doing it, because that music. You know, I just get carried away in it."
And while her body might not be able to heat up the floor anymore, it's clear that the music still moves.
Barker is alive and well today, and she's still watching those old videos that bring her so much joy.
"Oh yes, she has them," Shuff, who posts as TenFresh, revealed on Reddit. "And the recreation nurse plays them on the big TV in the communal room regularly. She's kinda a rock star these days."
Just as she was back in the days when she danced alongside the likes of Frank Sinatra and Gene Kelly.
After reuniting Barker with her old clips, Shuff would now like to unite her with her new fans who've discovered her via the now-viral video. As such, he invites them to send flowers and mail to: Alice Barker, c/o Bishop Henry B. Hucles Episcopal Nursing Home, 835 Herkimer Street, Brooklyn, NY, 11233.
Barker's ready for her new-(and old) found fame.
"She knows her video is up here and is loving it," Shuff said. "Says it makes her feel connected to the world again."
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