Denise MASON
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MASON _ Denise Quan Denise Quan Mason died May 16, 2003 due to a combination of Lymphoma and Myelodysplasia, a syndrome that prevented the production of normal blood by the bone marrow. She was born July 25, 1933 in New Westminster, British Columbia. Denise studied classical ballet at London's Royal Academy of Dancing where she received her Solo Seal Certificate. She danced as a soloist in the British Columbia Ballet Company and in the Vancouver landmark television shows, Bamboula and The Eleanor Show. Later, she appeared on the CBS Ed Sullivan Show. In New York City, she studied under Anthony Tudor at the Metropolitan Ballet School. In 1958 the Broadway hit Flower Drum Song opened at the St. James Theater, where she danced the role of Linda Row in the dream ballet. Denise appeared in Off-Broadway and summer stock roles in A Portrait of an Actise as Phillipino Ondine, Fiddler on the Roof, Wizard of Oz, Destiny Rides Again, King and I, World of Suzie Wong, Tea House of the August Moon, and A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum. After her stage career, Denise became an interior designer in Manhattan, joining her husband's architectural firm of Mason-DaSilva Associates. She and her husband later moved to Whidbey Island in 1990. There, she taught dance at the Academy of Dance in Oak Harbor and choreographed local productions at the Whidbey Playhouse. Denise had a full life-she was an active skier and avid bicyclist, having toured much of the world on two wheels. She gave her time in later years volunteering at the WAIF thrift shop in Oak Harbor, a non-profit organization dedicated to the welfare of animals on the Island. Denise is survived by her husband Larry Mason of Coupeville, Washington; by her sister Gwen Wong and brother Winston Quan, both of Burnaby, B.C.; by her funky dog, Bear; and her wonderful cat, Ralph. Arrangements and cremation are under the direction Burley Funeral Chapel, Oak Harbor, Washington.


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Published in The Vancouver Sun on May 24, 2003.