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Jupiter Conjunct Uranus- A Look at Bob Fosse's Legacy

The Jupiter-Uranus Conjunction in Taurus will occur on April 20th, 2024. Due to the slow movement of these planets, Jupiter and Uranus only form a conjunction around once every 12 years. Rather than speaking specifically about the impact this astrological phenomenon will affect us as individuals, I would like to talk about the impact of this astrological phenomenon in the chart of Oscar, Emmy, and Tony winning Broadway and Hollywood dancer, director and choreographer, Bob Fosse.




 

PT. I – Background

 

            Let us start with background on our astrological understandings of Jupiter and Uranus as well as the sign of Aries and the 1st house to get a better understanding of the significance.

 

Uranus is a modern planet, meaning it is not one of the original wandering stars that Babylonians observed. Instead, Uranus was discovered by telescope on March 13, 1781 and what coincided with this discovery is what astrologers immediately took note of. The late 18th century marked huge advancements and access to modern science, the age of enlightenment, the global movement towards democracy over monarchial and aristocratic reign, the release of ‘Critique of Pure Reason’ and ‘Critique of Practical Reason’ by Immanuel Kant, Beethoven/Mozart/Bach all dropping bangers/coming up on the scene, the industrial revolution literally revolutionizing the fabric U.S. and Western European land and economies forever… need I go on? This is part of the reason why the significations of Uranus deal with concepts like eccentricity, radical change, democracy, innovation, and the desire to break free.

 

Jupiter on the other hand is a traditional planet with a long-standing astrological history that we can consult to better understand the significations. According to Vettius Valens, a 2nd-century Hellenistic astrologer, Jupiter indicates prosperity, salaries, great gifts, ranks, freedom, money, inheritance, engendering, authority over temples, the race and the thighs and feet. According to Sue Tompkins, Jupiter tends to expand everything it touches. She sums it up to a few concepts like inflation, exaggeration, wisdom, wealth, meaning, vision, faith, confidence, and greed. According to traditional astrology, Jupiter is the greatest benefic and prefers the nature of the day rather than the night. Bob Fosse was indeed born during the day, how auspicious.

 

Before I go too deep let’s have a quick chat about astrological houses and what they are. When you look at the chart it seems to be sliced in twelve and numbered, those are the houses. They can be calculated in numerous ways for various philosophical and mathematical reasons but we’re not going to worry too much about that today. I just want you to know that these twelve slices correspond to twelve different areas of human life ranging from siblings to children to income (see diagram below). Each slice cuts into a sign and the sign it cuts into is considered to be the ruler of that slice/house which we’ll talk more about shortly. Alright, I don’t mean to be dramatic but I DO NOT conflate the sign of Aries to the significations of the 1st house. As in Aries does not equal the first house and Taurus does not equal the second house. Aries does not represent where the soul meets the body in an individual’s chart and the 1st house does not represent quick burning inspiration (unless you are of course an Aries rising (but our pal Bob is not). What significations I do apply to the 1st house and Aries are as follows.




 

Aries – Diurnal polarity, Fire element, cardinal modality. Aries is ruled by Mars, is the exaltation of the Sun, the detriment of Venus and the Fall of Saturn. Pioneering, enterprising, being noticed for being first, striking while the iron is hot, the leader/hero, getting straight to the point, directness which can be perceived as brashness, acting in the moment, the power of a single moment, intuitive action, hiding insecurities through over-compensation/domination. Aries rules the head and face.

 

1st house – Where the soul met the body – the birth of an independent life/ the beginning, the upmost indicator of the individual in the chart, the body, the health (not to be confused with the decline of health found in the 6th house), the helm of the chart, the joy of Mercury.


Another key to the impact of the Jupiter-Uranus conjunction in the chart of Bob Fosse comes up regarding his MC. Jupiter rules his Sagittarius MC (medium coeli) which, astrologically, relates to the concept of legacy, vocation, and what ones public or social standing. In a way this is where we relate to the collective and define our contribution to society. When I say Jupiter rules his MC you may be scratching your head but let me try to explain the astrological concepts of rulership and the MC.


To start, the planets have a sort of domain and rule over certain signs. For example, the signs Sagittarius and Pisces are ruled by Jupiter while the signs Aries and Scorpio are ruled by Mars. I do use and highly encourage folks to consider traditional rulership when working through interpretations while allowing the modern planets to serve as added context. The medium coeli is “the highest point of intersection between the Meridian and the Ecliptic.” In plain English, a meridian is a semi-circle that connects the north and south poles; in this case a semi-circle starting from where you are and wrapping around the North and South poles, dividing the Earth (and sky) into East and West halves. The ecliptic is the path of the Earth around the Sun (or from the geocentric view, the apparent path the Sun takes around the Earth). The point where they intersect in the Southern direction is called the Medium Coeli or MC for short.

 

 
























PT. II – Bob Fosse’s Legacy

           

            To have a great deal of astrological and astronomical knowledge is fabulous but it only fully comes together when we have the full context of the person’s life. The bitter truth is that we can never really know what was going on in someone’s mind without consulting them, however, we can look at different publicized aspects of their life to form a better understanding.

 

           According to his Wikipedia page, “Bob Fosse was an American actor, choreographer, dancer, and film and stage director. He directed and choreographed musical works on stage and screen, including the stage musicals The Pajama Game (1954), Damn Yankees (1955), How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying (1961), Sweet Charity (1966), Pippin (1972), and Chicago (1975). He directed the films Sweet Charity (1969), Cabaret (1972), Lenny (1974), All That Jazz (1979), and Star 80 (1983).

 

Fosse's distinctive style of choreography included turned-in knees and "jazz hands". He is the only person ever to have won Oscar, Emmy, and Tony awards in the same year (1973). He was nominated for four Academy Awards, winning Best Director for Cabaret, and won the Palme d'Or in 1980 for All That Jazz. He won a record eight Tonys for his choreography, as well as one for direction for Pippin.

 

            Notable distinctions of Fosse's style included the use of turned-in knees, the "Fosse Amoeba", sideways shuffling, rolled shoulders and jazz hands. With Astaire as an influence, Fosse used props such as bowler hats, canes and chairs. His trademark use of hats was influenced by his own self-consciousness, according to Martin Gottfried in his biography of Fosse, "His baldness was the reason that he wore hats and was doubtless why he put hats on his dancers." Fosse used gloves in his performances because he did not like his hands. Some of his most popular numbers include "Steam Heat" (The Pajama Game) and "Big Spender" (Sweet Charity). The "Rich Man's Frug" scene (starring a young Ben Vereen) in Sweet Charity is another example of his signature style.”

 

Wow, can you start to see the connections between his astrology and his legacy?

 

 

PT. III – Putting It All Together

 

His legacy (MC) is ruled by the sign Sagittarius and because Sagittarius is ruled by Jupiter, we would say his MC is ruled by Jupiter. Sagittarius is a mutable sign and is thus a sign of changes and multiples/duality. Being ruled by Jupiter, this indicates a legacy that was likely to grow and expand and change throughout his life. However, Sagittarius is also the arrow constantly traveling in the direction of its target. What this looks like is Fosse working on the movie Lenny at the same time at the musical Chicago which famously burned him out and resulted in the creation of 'All That Jazz', expanding his career from dancing to choreography and eventually directing, and his eclectic combination of dance styles in his choreography.

 

Fosse’s natal Jupiter is conjunct Uranus in his 1st house in the sign of Aries. We know the 1st house is the physical body and Jupiter expands the rebellious and freedom achieving energy of Uranus. A crucial part of Bob Fosse’s legacy rests on the fact that his unique movement came from a desire to hide his perceived shortcomings, which as we learned connects heavily to the Aries archetype.

 

In his own words, “I thank god I wasn’t born perfect.” – Bob Fosse

 

  • Aries also has a connection with the Head, he used hats often in his choreography and has stated this was because he started losing his hair early (directors at MGM told him he would NEED a toupee in order to perform)

 

  • Jupiter also forms major aspects to Mercury and Saturn… - Mercury = hands (popularized jazz hands) + wearing gloves for choreography because he did not like his hands - Saturn = knees, bones (popularized turned in stance throughout choreography which is initiated at the hips/thighs and accentuated through the knees). It was stated that he had bad posture and little turnout which inspired this iconic stylistic choice.

 

We can begin to see the ways in which his unique and exaggerated bodily characteristics were something that he chose to lean into and made him an individual amongst his contemporaries. He wanted to overcompensate for his short comings by leaning so fully into them and allowing that kind of authenticity to put him in the spotlight as a leader. Jupiter also relates to someone’s philosophies and although I cannot assure this interpretation as true… I wonder if Fosse had a revolutionary personal philosophy around the physical body. Something that inspired him to move in a way that accentuated perceived faults and pushed back against the modern perceptions of bodies and movement at the time.

 

Jupiter and Uranus together provide the energy to shake things up on a large scale, but unlike other planets pairing with Uranus, Jupiter naturally provides a wealth of space to explore and revolutionize for Uranus. Like Uranus, Jupiter also speaks to the concept of freedom and breaking the chains that bind something that Bob Fosse absolutely did in his career. He took this accentuated (Jupiter) bodily (1H) uniqueness (Uranus) and allowed it to become his leading edge in the world around him (Aries).

 

A final note of interpretations, Fosse is also known for being Gwen Verdon’s husband and father of their daughter, Nicole. Verdon was a star in her own right and well-respected in the industry. I read that the media typically criticized Fosse while supporting Verdon and she simply always supported his image and legacy which is pretty huge considering the personal difficulties they faced throughout their marriage and separation. Jupiter is also related to childbearing and loves so I feel it important to note that connection as well.  

 

PT. IV – Conclusion

 

In conclusion, this picture of Fosse is so charming. Please note the cutie and patootie energy being exuded and his Cancer Sun/Aries Moon.




Alright, I’m done with the silliness thank you for indulging me.

 

In conclusion, the Jupiter-Uranus conjunction in Bob Fosse’s chart is notable and can be observed throughout his work and legacy. We can see that this conjunction produced a sort of rejection of bodily restraints and Fosse indeed chose the hopeful route of revolutionizing modern dance and movement. He recognized his individuality as a gift despite the ways in which he was judged early on in his career for these very same characteristics. With Jupiter as an incredibly impactful planet regarding Fosse’s legacy the way in which he defined his role in the greater collective, we can see there was a desire to never settle for the average and to always revolutionize and radically change his craft for the better.

 

In his own words,

“I can’t stand mediocrity or sloppiness when I go to the theater myself. I think I have a dreadful fear that there is a great streak of mediocrity and laziness in me. I’m so afraid of this indolent streak – that it will take over so I work twice as hard and try to make things twice as good. I used to rehearse all night long because I thought ahh every other director and choreographer is sleeping.”

– Bob Fosse

 



What would you like to see Ari write about next?

  • Desire, I Want To Turn Into You - A Neptunian Exploration

  • Lunar Balsamic and Literally Iconic

  • 6th House Stelliums & Bob Fosse


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