Invitation to the Dance (1956)

1h 33m
Running time

May 22, 1956
Release Date


Release Date
May 22, 1956


Running time
1h 33m



Invitation to the Dance is a 1956 American dance anthology film consisting of three distinct stories, all starring and directed by Gene Kelly. It was the first film Kelly directed on his own, after co-directing three films with Stanley Donen.

The film is unusual in that it has no spoken dialogue, with the characters performing their roles entirely through dance and mime. Kelly appears in all three stories, which feature leading dancers of the era, including Tommy Rall, Igor Youskevitch, Tamara Toumanova and Carol Haney.

The film's shooting was completed in 1954, but its release was delayed until 1956 because of doubts at Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. The movie performed poorly at the box office, and it generally is regarded as an artistic as well as commercial failure.

The film takes its name from a piano composition of the same name by Carl Maria von Weber, portions of which are played during the opening credits.

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