"...No wonder Paramount execs have dubbed Cindy 'the Doris Day of the
'80s.' " -People Magazine
Cynthia Rhodes: Actress, Dancer, & Singer
Cynthia takes time to reply to fan questions & comments.
Sights and sounds of Cynthia
As a child Cynthia danced, sang, and dreamt of being a movie star. More appreciably, the goal-oriented, self-disciplined girl had the drive behind the dream. As cited in the 7-25-83 issue of People Magazine "...most of her teens were spent training six hours daily to be a gymnast, which accounts for her remarkably athletic dance style. She won some 30 gold medals in statewide competition, but gave up her goal of winning the Olympic gold to concentrate on a career in showbiz." She also worked as a singer and dancer at Opryland during high school. Though Cynthia had no family ties to the entertainment industry, she cites something more valuable: A solid, supportive upbringing. The faith-based values (see quote on Rosanna page) instilled by her parents would serve her well throughout the Hollywood journey.
Cynthia's athletic training was notably utilized in her early role as the punk-style club dancer Tina Tech in the movie Flashdance (1983). However, it was her dancing swagger in Toto's music video Rosanna (see our video gallery for a QuickTime clip) that caught the eye of Sylvester Stallone, who was on a talent hunt for an all-in-one actress, dancer, & singer. This led to her casting as Jackie in the Saturday Night Fever sequel Staying Alive (1983), that co-starred John Travolta and the talented actress/dancer Finola Hughes. This was the setting where she first met a "starving young artist" named Richard Marx, who was brought in to help with the music.
Cynthia's next role would be a clear departure from dance & musical films, where she made a smooth transition to become a uniformed officer in the action sci-fi movie Runaway (1984) with co-star Tom Selleck. According to many fans, however, her signature dance role was clearly yet to come: Three years later she played the role of Penny Johnson, where grace and athleticism converged on the dance floor in the award winning classic Dirty Dancing (1987). Around this time she also appeared in Richard Marx's music video Don't Mean Nothing.
In 1988, her career led her to Namibia and the outer regions of South Africa for the location shoot of the adventure movie Curse of the Crystal Eye, that co-starred Jameson Parker. Soon after, Cynthia was lead singer for Animotion, and enjoyed a Top Ten hit with "Room to Move" in 1989. Richard was among the album's producers. Cynthia and Richard wed earlier that same year. With that, she quietly retired - as though it was part of the long term plan; opting to stay at home upon the start of their family. In the years that followed, they have had three boys. In kind, Richard has bypassed lengthy tours in recent years and works in his home-based studio as a writer/arranger/producer for other artists. They reside in Chicago, Illinois.
People story photos - clippings
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