NEW YORK — Louis Falco, a choreographer and modern dance artist who founded his own company and was celebrated worldwide for his energetic creations for films like "Fame," died Friday of AIDS. He was 50.
Falco was with friends and family members at his Manhattan home, where he died at 1:20 a.m., according to Alan Sener, a personal assistant and a former principal dancer with Falco's company.
After directing the Louis Falco Dance Company for 16 years, Falco disbanded it in 1983 to concentrate on choreographing, writing and directing for film and television, as well as creating ballets for other companies.
His involvement in film began with "Fame" in 1980. He later choreographed sequences for "Angel Heart" and other films.
The son of Italian immigrants, Falco was born in New York and raised on Manhattan's Lower East Side. He began dancing professionally with the Charles Weidman Company while attending the High School of Performing Arts.
Falco danced as a featured member of the Jose Limon Dance Company from 1960 to 1970, often opposite Limon in pieces created for him.
Falco's appearances as a dancer included starring guest roles at La Scala Opera House in Milan, Italy, and performances with Rudolph Nureyev on Broadway in Limon's "The Moor's Pavane."
The Louis Falco Dance Company launched a highly successful first season in 1967 with premieres that included "Huescape," "Timewright" and "Argot."
The company was renowned for a style--based on the Limon technique--that presented movement as an extension of behavioral activity. Dancers appeared as ordinary people who communicated through movement.
Falco's contemporary image stemmed from his use of popular music, and sets and costumes by artists Robert Indiana and Marisol.
His company, comprising dancers of diverse ethnic backgrounds, toured throughout the world and performed at such major festivals as Spoleto, Avignon, Jacob's Pillow, the American Dance Festival and the Holland Festival.
Falco created more than two dozen works for his company and ballets for companies throughout the world; many were never performed in the United States.
He also choreographed videos for pop singers Prince, the Cars and Ricky Scaggs.
Survivors include two sisters and a brother.