This photo of the “Roxyettes” is part of the Ben M. Hall Collection at Theatre Historical Society. The scrapbook from which this photo was taken contains some 30+ views of stage shows at the Roxy between 1931-1933.
The group was founded in St. Louis, Missouri by Russell Markert in 1925, as the “Missouri Rockets.” Markert had been inspired by the John Tiller Girls in the Ziegfeld Follies of 1922, and was convinced that “If I ever got a chance to get a group of American girls who would be taller and have longer legs and could do really complicated tap routines and eye-high kicks… they’d knock your socks off!”
The group was brought to New York City by Samuel “Roxy” Rothafel to perform at his Roxy Theatre and renamed the “Roxyettes.” When Rothafell left the Roxy Theatre for Radio City Music Hall, the dance troupe followed and later became known as the Rockettes. The group performed as part of opening night at Radio City Music Hall on December 27, 1932.