Cover image for Dancing Wheels
Dancing Wheels
McMahon, Patricia.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Boston : Houghton Mifflin Co., [2000]

Physical Description:
48 pages : color illustrations ; 27 cm
Describes the creation, training, and performances of the dance troupe known as Dancing Wheels who incorporate the movements of dancers who dance standing up and those who are in wheelchairs.
Reading Level:
730 Lexile.
Program Information:
Accelerated Reader AR LG 4.9 1.0 45406.
Added Author:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
GV1799.2 .M36 2000 Juvenile Non-Fiction Open Shelf
GV1799.2 .M36 2000 Juvenile Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks
GV1799.2 .M36 2000 Juvenile Non-Fiction Open Shelf

On Order



Author Patricia McMahon takes us backstage with the Dancing Wheels dance company and into the lives of two young dancers -- Jenny, a "sit-down" dancer, and her partner Devin, a "stand-up" dancer. She also introduces readers to the woman who founded the company, Mary Verdi-Fletcher. Mary was born with spina bifida but always dreamed of becoming a dancer. When she grew up, she not only fulfilled that dream, she made it possible for others to follow in her path.
Photographer John Godt has captured the daily hard work and joyful moments in the studio as well as the incredible transformation of the dancers after months of preparation. Once they are onstage, a special, almost indescribable magic occurs -- a dramatic choreography of wheels, arms, legs, color, costumes, lighting, music, and movement: the magic of Dancing Wheels.

Reviews 2

Booklist Review

Gr. 3ing Wheels is the realization of Mary Verdi-Fletcher's dream. Though born with spina bifida and confined to a wheelchair, Mary wanted to be a dancer. She has not only achieved her goal, but through Dancing Wheels, enabled others with physical restrictions to dance as well. Color photographs document a Dancing Wheels summer workshop where "stand-up" dancers partner with "sit-down" dancers in wheelchairs. The rigorous practice routines, spontaneous moments of interaction among the dancers, and dramatic views of a Dancing Wheels production are captioned and attractively displayed while the text acquaints readers with individual dancers and their "can do" attitude. Just as Dancing Wheels fosters trust and understanding between disabled and nondisabled participants, so McMahon's book opens readers' eyes to another dimension of dance and encourages the appreciation of desires and talents different from their own. --Ellen Mandel

School Library Journal Review

Gr 2-6-This inspiring photo-essay shares the vision of Mary Verdi-Fletcher, creator of a children's dance troupe that blends "sit-down" dancers in wheelchairs with "stand-up" performers. The book follows the company from practice to opening day of "The Sorcerer's Apprentices." The full-color photographs capture the magical transformation of everyday children into stars of the stage. Godt also manages to show the warmth, determination, and enthusiasm generated in the classes. This is an original addition to dance literature with the important added value of being part of the growing collection of books about children with special needs. This outstanding volume presents unique content in a lively, attractive format on a much-needed subject.-Nora Jane Natke, Hooked on Books, Hollywood, FL (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.