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Marika Rivera (Marika Rivera)

Marika Rivera

Dancer, Actress. Following a successful ballet and stage career she earned praise in British movies. Raised in Paris, she was the child of noted Mexican painter Diego Rivera and one of his mistresses, Russian artist Marevna Vorobieff. Rivera never officially claimed her as his daughter, and when he abandoned his family in 1921 Marevna was left to fend for herself. Marika was taught to dance from age three by Isadora Duncan, and grew up absorbing the Parisian artistic milieu, but essentially without education. A professional from age five, she married (briefly) painter Jean-Paul Brusset in 1938. During World War II, she worked with the Red Cross entertaining French, British, and American troops in North Africa; after the war, she wed publisher Rodney Phillips and moved to England. Marika continued dancing, modeled for photographer Angus McBean, and attended the the Margaret Rutherford theatrical school to improve her English. She achieved West End success in “Diplomatic Baggage” and other fare, and toured with her one-woman show “Marika’s Cafe Theatre” which recalled her Montmartre years. Upon her second divorce, she settled, with her mother and children, in Ealing; her silver screen debut came in the 1965 “Darling” (with Julie Christie). Other roles (often as a madam) followed, with her movie credits including the 1968 “The Girl on a Motorcycle”, “Fiddler on the Roof” (1971), “Voyage of the Damned” (1976), and the 1980 “Hussy”. She was acclaimed as a hotel owner in “Hotel du Paradis” (1986), and took part in “Vincent”, the 1987 film based on the life of Van Gogh. Marika was also to be seen on television, making some appearances in “The Saint” and other British series. She lived her final years in Dorset and died after an extended illness. (bio by: Bob Hufford)  Family links:  Parents:  Diego Rivera (1886 – 1957)  Marie Vorobieff (1892 – 1984)


  • November, 13, 1919
  • France


  • January, 01, 2010
  • England


  • Cremated

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