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Ruth Sobotka

Birthplace: Vienna, Vienna, Austria
Death: June 17, 1967 (41)
New York, New York County, New York, United States
Immediate Family:

Daughter of Walter Sobotka and Gisela Sobotka
Ex-wife of Stanley Kubrick

Managed by: Randy Schoenberg
Last Updated:
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Immediate Family

About Ruth Sobotka

Ruth A. Sobotka (born in Vienna, Austria, August 4, 1925 - died in New York City, June 17, 1967) was an Austrian-born dancer, costume designer, art director, painter, and actress. The daughter of prominent Austrian architect and interior designer, Walter Sobotka (1888-1972) and Viennese actress, Gisela Schönau, Ruth Sobotka immigrated to the United States from Vienna with her parents in 1938. She studied set design at The University of Pennsylvania and graduated from the Carnegie Institute of Technology. After studying at the School of American Ballet, Sobotka became a member of George Balanchine's Ballet Society (1946-1948) and its successor The New York City Ballet from 1949-1961. She also designed the costumes for and danced in the Jerome Robbins' controversial ballet The Cage (1951) and played Robbins' wife in Tyl Eulenspiegel (1951). Sobotka appeared in many successful Balanchine ballets including The Four Temperaments (1946); Serenade, Apollo, Symphony in C (1946); Swan Lake (pas de quatre) (1951); Concerto Barocco, The Nutcracker (1954); Ivesiana (1954) Agon (1957) and The Figure in the Carpet (1961). Sobotka also danced in James Waring's company and for major American choreographers and designed costumes for works by Paul Taylor, Erick Hawkins, and John Taras. She danced on Broadway in the musicals Sadie Thompson (1944) and the Balanchine revival of On Your Toes (1954). A young Sobotka appeared as "The Girl" in Man Ray's segment "Ruth, Roses and Revolvers" in the groundbreaking avant-garde film by Hans Richter, Dreams That Money Can Buy (1946). Ruth Sobotka was the second wife of film director Stanley Kubrick (1928-1999). She and Kubrick met in 1952; they married in January 1955; separated in 1958, and divorced in 1961. Sobotka appeared in a cameo role of the ballerina "Iris" in Kubrick's Killer's Kiss (1954) and served as art director on the sets of Killer's Kiss and Kubrick's subsequent feature, The Killing (1956). After her resignation from the NYC Ballet in 1961, Sobotka choreographed for the Shakespeare Festival in Stamford, Connecticut and studied acting under Herbert Bergoff, Uta Hagen and later Lee Strasberg at The Actor's Studio. She appeared in a number of off-Broadway productions and was a member of the Seattle Repertory Theatre during their first season in 1963, playing Cordelia in King Lear . Sobotka died after a brief illness in 1967.

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Ruth Sobotka's Timeline

September 4, 1925
Vienna, Vienna, Austria
June 17, 1967
Age 41
New York, New York County, New York, United States