Letty Lind was born Letitia Rudge in Birmingham in 1862. She was one of five sisters, all of whom became well known performers. She first appeared on stage when she was about five, then appeared as a dancer in pantomime, and toured from the age of 12. She became famous as a skirt dancer of great charm and grace. Though technically her singing voice was limited, she used it with great skill and she later became a popular musical comedy performer. Skirt dancing, Lind explained, was an alternative school of dance to ballet, with its own distinctive steps and styles. Most important were the control and movement of the full silk skirts with their lace frills. Skirt dancing's advantage over ballet was that people could do it at home and it became popular among all social classes.