Creative Baby Names: The best dancers’ names from Allegra to Merce

Coincidentally or not, many dancers have names that aptly project an image of lightness and grace. And this cuts across many disciplines of dance, from toe to tap, and across generations as well. As with all artistic children, we have to wonder how much influence the parents who chose their creative baby names had on their offspring’s vocations. Is it serendipitous that ballerina Allegra Kent was given a name that projects such a quintessentially dancer-like image? But hold on–before we jump to conclusions, you’ll see that half of the dancers shown chose their own terpsichorean names.
Here are the Nameberry Picks of best dancers’ names.


Picture 1 of 13

Allegra Kent joined the New York City Ballet in 1953 at the age of fifteen, becoming a principal four years later, dancing many roles created for her by George Balanchine. This balletic name was chosen for their daughters by the poets Byron and Longfellow, by Buckminster Fuller and Donatella Versace, but by few others in modern times, and so remains a distinctive, lovely option.

Subscribe to our newsletter

* indicates required


15 Responses to “Creative Baby Names: The best dancers’ names from Allegra to Merce”

You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.

augusta_lee Says:

October 18th, 2012 at 11:50 pm

I love so many of these, but Loie jumped out at me immediately. It would make a beautiful short form of my beloved Eloise. But where’s the Nameberry entry?!

Poppy528 Says:

October 19th, 2012 at 12:28 am

Wow what great names! Is Loie pronounced like Chloe without the C?

Mara_lyn86 Says:

October 19th, 2012 at 1:44 am

I really like this post. They seem to always have such lovely names. My name could never fit a ballerina.
Hopefully Allegra can live past it’s allergy medicine association in the states. It is so lovely.
Great post!

linda Says:

October 19th, 2012 at 6:24 am

Yes Loie rhymes with Chloe.

ashadore Says:

October 19th, 2012 at 7:24 am

What about Margot Fonteyn? I also love Loie – as much as I love Loire.

pam Says:

October 19th, 2012 at 7:33 am

One of my favorites isn’t on here either — Tanaquil! As in ballet dancer Tanaquil LeClercq.

abeezee Says:

October 19th, 2012 at 7:52 am

I think Gelsey Kirkland should have been included too!

ephraimsmom Says:

October 19th, 2012 at 12:55 pm

Loie is one of my favorite names ever! When my fiance and I were first dating we saw an exhibit about Loie Fuller in a museum, and I’ve wanted to use it ever since.

shanbrownie Says:

October 19th, 2012 at 5:22 pm

Lots of fun name ideas! Loving Allegra and Twyla. Some other dancers with great names Ginger Rogers, Fred Astaire (Astaire would be a cool name for a boy?!), Gene Kelly, Agnes de Mille, Martha Graham, and Alvin Ailey.

UniqueNameLover Says:

October 19th, 2012 at 10:49 pm

I love Allegra and Isadora. Isadora is a name that I hold dearly to my heart. I like Twila spelled this way. Violette is okay.

encore Says:

October 19th, 2012 at 11:39 pm

Whoever was asking about Loie, I know someone with that name, and it rhymes with Chloe and Zoe.

I love Allegra!

peach Says:

October 20th, 2012 at 1:49 am

There are some lovely names here. Hanya is new to me and I quite like it. My favorite usable name here is Isadora. Unfortunately I doubt many US parents would like the allergy medicine association with Allegra. And no dancers I know would use Twyla because of her terrible reputation among those who have worked with her.

driftergreen Says:

October 20th, 2012 at 10:32 am

Oh, Loie! How lovely! I can’t say there’s a name I dislike on this list, except perhaps Savion, which I’m not sure has the potential to grow on me.

NameLovingWriter Says:

October 21st, 2012 at 12:58 pm

Sonya Tayeh is a great choreographer and I like her name a lot as well

JossieChris Says:

May 21st, 2014 at 3:40 pm

Antoinette Sibley is a dancer who played Sevilla Haslam in The Turning Point. I have always remembered that name and wish I was brave enough to burden my child with the name Sevilla (See-Vee-Yah). It is soo close to Sophia I worry it would be miss interpreted, spelled, etc.

leave a reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.