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Tex Eddleman Oral History

Biography

Olin “Tex” Clyde Eddleman was born to Grady Clyde Eddleman and Mabel Eddleman in Weatherford, Texas on April 16, 1922. Mr. Eddleman had two siblings, a sister, Elizabeth, and a brother, Robert. At age seven, his brother and sister took him to the South Side Recreation Center in Fort Worth, Texas. After viewing his first tap class there, he knew he wanted to be an entertainer. When the family returned to Fort Worth after spending a few years in Arkansas, Mr. Eddleman began studying the performing arts. Two years later he joined the Fort Worth Community Circus. He performed first as a clown, and at 15, he became a tight-wire walker.

Mr. Eddleman enlisted in the Air Force at the age of twenty and served stateside for the duration of WWII. At the end of the war, he moved the New York City to study fine arts. There he studied tap, classical Spanish, flamenco, modern and choreography before he joined the touring company of the Theatre Guild’s production of “Oklahoma!” Upon his return to Fort Worth, Mr. Eddleman worked with the Fort Worth Opera Chorus as a singer and dancer. While with the Opera Chorus, he performed in “Carmen” with Margo Dean. Mr. Eddleman performed in a variety of shows over the years including the DeWayne Brothers Circus and Disney on Parade. In 1985, he formed the Tex’s Tip Top Tappers, a professional tap company co-directed by Gracey Tune.

In addition to performing, Mr. Eddleman taught dance and music. He taught tap for ten years at Professional Youth Conservatory. In his seventies, he taught advanced taught classes in Florida, and in his eighties, he taught flamenco, ukulele and banjo classes at Arts Fifth Avenue in Fort Worth.

Sources:

  • Tune, Gracey. 19th Annual Celebration of National Tap Dance Day Honoring Master Tap Octogenarians: Tex Clyde, Larry Howard & Gloria Whetstone. Press Release. May 13, 2008.
  • Svokos, Heather. “The lifelong dance - It was his first love, and it will be his last. Tex Eddleman first felt the pull of the stage at 7, and after nearly 80 years in front of audiences, his performing heart still savors the stage.” Fort Worth Star-Telegram, March 26, 2006. NewsBank.
  • Goodrich, Terry Lee. “At 74, veteran tap dancer ` Tex ‘ Clyde Eddleman shows no signs of slowing down.” Fort Worth Star-Telegram, April 12, 1996. NewsBank.

Provenance

Ken Hopkins of the Fort Worth Library conducted the interview with Tex Eddleman on August 11, 1995.

Scope and Contents Note

This collection consists of 2 transcripts and 1 audio cassette tape from the oral history interview Ken Hopkins conducted with Tex Eddleman on August 11, 1995. There is a transcript of the initial conversation and a transcript that has been marked up for edits. There is no a final transcript available. The collection measures .2 linear feet (1 box).

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Last updated: Oct. 17, 2014