Patsy Swayze, mother of Patrick Swayze, dies at 86


Choreographer and dance instructor Patsy Swayze, who trained her late actor son Patrick Swayze on his way to “Dirty Dancing” fame, has died. She was 86.

Swayze died Monday evening at her home in Simi Valley, said publicist Annett Wolf. A cause of death was not given, though the Houston Chronicle reported Swayze suffered a stroke on Sept. 8.

The Houston native choreographed the 1980 film “Urban Cowboy,” for which she coached John Travolta on the movements of the two-step. Her other cinematic choreography credits include “Liar’s Moon” and “Hope Floats.”


PHOTOS: Patrick Swayze - Life in Pictures

For the 2003 film “One Last Dance,” Swayze worked with Patrick Swayze and daughter-in-law Lisa Niemi Swayze, who also directed the film. Lisa was a teenage student at Patsy Swayze’s dance studio when she met Patrick; the couple married in 1975.

Broadway star Tommy Tune, “Fame” director Debbie Allen and actors Randy Quaid and Jaclyn Smith are among Patsy Swayze’s other former pupils. Her five children became actors and dancers.

Her interest in dance was sparked after a childhood car accident. Her mother enrolled her in dance classes to help her recover from the accident and rebuild her strength, which ignited a love that eventually led to a career, Swayze told a Simi Valley newspaper in 2007.

Swayze founded and directed the Houston Jazz Ballet Company and also ran her own studio. She was a resident choreographer at a number of local institutions and for 18 years taught dance at the University of Houston.

Hollywood came knocking after the success of “Urban Cowboy,” and in 1980 Swayze moved her family to California. She directed a dance studio in Simi Valley for more than two decades, instructing in styles that ranged from classical ballet to American jazz.


She died just two days after the fourth anniversary of Patrick Swayze’s 2009 death from pancreatic cancer.

A complete obituary will follow at


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