- Judith Chazin-Bennahum
Laing, Hugh (06 June 1911–10 May 1988), dancer, was born Hugh Morris Alleyne Skinner on the island of Barbados in the British West Indies, the son of Donald Morris Skinner, a well-to-do merchant of English and Irish extraction and Beatrice Alleyne, also of English extraction. It was his mother who encouraged him in the arts. In his early years Laing played tennis, climbed trees, had a trapeze in his “golden apple tree,” and his own pony that he rode bareback. Although he assumed that one day he would become a doctor, he changed his mind and decided to become a commercial artist. In 1931, Laing went to London to study at the Grosvenor School of Modern Art where he remained just eighteen months, preferring his studies of dance at Marie Rambert’s Ballet Club. He was rapidly becoming one of the most fascinating and talented performers in the Rambert company. There he met another member of the company, the young dancer and choreographer ...