Frances Taylor Davis, who was the first wife of jazz music legend Miles Davis, had passed away. The dancer died on Saturday morning at the age of 89.
Her family announced her death in a statement to the media. They did not disclose her cause of death.
“It is with great sadness and heavy heart that we, the family of Frances Taylor Davis, announce her passing early this morning.”
According to Essence, Davis, who was a Chicago native, was an entertainer at heart. She was a dancer, and her skill allowed her to travel all over the world.
“Frances was granted a scholarship at age 16 to study dance at the Dunham Technique in NY with Katherine Dunham. She trained and toured extensively with Dunham’s professional dance company in Europe and South Africa,” according to the family’s press statement. “On the 1948 tour, Frances was recruited for a special presentation to perform with the Paris Opera Ballet. She was the first African American in the history of the company to be invited to perform with the esteemed ballet company.”
She also appeared with Sammy Davis, Jr. in “Porgy And Bess,” “Mr. Wonderful” and “Shinbone Alley." She was also in the original cast of West Side Story on Broadway.
Frances was primarily known for her relationship with Miles Davis. The famous musician put her on the cover of his iconic 1961 album “ “Someday My Prince Will Come.”
Sadly, their relationship was one of domestic violence. Frances left Davis in 1965 after five years of marriage in 1965. They were divorced in 1968.
“Every time I hit her, I felt bad because a lot of it really wasn’t her fault but had to do with me being temperamental and jealous,” Davis wrote in his 1990 memoir “Miles: The Autobiography.”
After she retired, she was a popular figure in West Hollywood. She was a great hostess.
“..She was best known in West Hollywood as the hostess of Hamburger Hamlet, the Sunset Boulevard gathering spot for celebrities such as Lucille Ball, Bette Davis, Frank Sinatra and Dean Martin that closed in 2011.”
She is survived by her son Jean Pierre Durand, step-daughter Cheryl Davis, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and many who loved her.
Please pray for the family as they mourn her passing. This is a such a sad loss.