Madame VACANI

Madame Vacani
related pages...

A Dancer’s Life

From ballet to ballroom


Robert Morley

THIS IS YOUR LIFE - Dame Marguerite Olivia Rankin, dance teacher known professionally as 'Madame Vacani', was surprised by Eamonn Andrews at the BBC Television Theatre.


Marguerite founded the Vacani School of Dance in 1915, a school which taught the sort of dancing and social etiquette that was a necessary accomplishment for young ladies and gentlemen of quality. Pupils were taught the ballroom dances of the day and debutante ladies learned the curtsy needed when presented at court


Madame Vacani held private classes for the Royal Princesses Elizabeth and Margaret Rose, and later Prince Charles and Princess Anne.

Photographs of Madame Vacani This Is Your Life

programme details...

  • Edition No: 148
  • Subject No: 148
  • Broadcast live: Mon 23 Jan 1961
  • Broadcast time: 7.30-8.00pm
  • Venue: BBC Television Theatre
  • Series: 6
  • Edition: 19

on the guest list...

  • Rose Turner
  • Mrs Thompson
  • Victoria Thompson
  • John Rankin - son
  • Walter Millard
  • Nannie Murphy
  • Lady Carolyn Howard
  • Lesley Howard
  • John Wilson
  • Betty Vacani - niece
  • Beverley Snyder
  • Henrietta Tiarks
  • Robert Morley
  • James Chatto
  • Janet Smith

external link...

production team...

  • Researcher: Nickola Sterne
  • Writer: Nickola Sterne
  • Director: Michael Goodwin
  • Producer: T Leslie Jackson
names listed in bold indicate subjects of This Is Your Life
with special thanks to John Wilson for his contribution to this page
Series 6 subjects: Leonard Cheshire > George Bennett > David Sheppard > Sybil Thorndike > Clarence Wolfe > Charles Coward > T E B Clarke > Helene Jeanty-Raven > Cyril Smith > Victor de Spiganovicz > Bill Hartley > Ellen Martha Field > Anthony Deane-Drummond > John Mills > Richard Bancroft > Freddie Mills > William Simpson > Alan Herbert > Madame Vacani > Elizabeth Ambridge > Robert Fawcus > Flora Robson > Edward Chad Varah > James Zarb > Maryan Rawicz and Walter Landauer > James Chipperfield > Anthony Kimmins > Thomas Cosmo Jones > Jessie Matthews > Helen Wilson > Charlie Chester > Brunel Cohen > Godfrey Winn > Billy Wright