Twyla Tharp is an American dancer and author who lives and works in New York City. In 1966, she formed her own company Twyla Tharp Dance and her work often uses classical music and contemporary pop music. From 1971 to 1988, Twyla Tharp Dance toured extensively around the world, in 1973, Tharp choreographed Deuce Coupe to the music of The Beach Boys for the Joffrey Ballet. Deuce Coupe is considered to be the first crossover ballet, she choreographed Push Comes to Shove, which featured Mikhail Baryshnikov and is now thought to be the best example of the crossover ballet. In 1988, Twyla Tharp Dance merged with American Ballet Theatre, Tharp was born in 1941 on a farm in Portland, the daughter of Lucille and William Tharp. She was named for Twila Thornburg, the Pig Princess of the 89th Annual Muncie Fair in Indiana as related in her own book The Creative Habit, Learn It and Use It for Life. As a young child, Tharp spent a few each year living with her Quaker grandparents on their farm in Indiana.
Her mother insisted she take lessons in dance, and piano, viola, shorthand, German, in 1950, Tharps family—younger sister Twanette, twin brothers Stanley and Stanford, and her parents—moved to Rialto, California. Her parents opened a movie theater, where Tharp worked. The drive-in was on the corner of Acacia and Foothill, the major east–west artery in Rialto and she attended Pacific High School in San Bernardino and studied at the Vera Lynn School of Dance. Tharp, a bookworm, admits that her schedule left little time for a social life. Tharp attended Pomona College in California but transferred to Barnard College in New York City and it was in New York that she studied with Richard Thomas, Martha Graham and Merce Cunningham. In 1963 Tharp joined the Paul Taylor Dance Company, in 1965, Tharp choreographed her first dance Tank Dive and formed her own company, Twyla Tharp Dance. Her work often utilizes classical music and contemporary pop music, from 1971 to 1988, Twyla Tharp Dance toured extensively around the world, performing original works.
In 1973, Tharp choreographed Deuce Coupe to the music of The Beach Boys for the Joffrey Ballet, Deuce Coupe is considered to be the first crossover ballet. Later she choreographed Push Comes to Shove, which featured Mikhail Baryshnikov and is now thought to be the best example of the crossover ballet. In 1988, Twyla Tharp Dance merged with American Ballet Theatre, in 2010, they had a total of 20 of her works in their repertory. Tharp created the dance roadshow Cutting Up with Mikhail Baryshnikov, in the summer of 2000, Twyla Tharp Dance regrouped with entirely new dancers
Labanotation or Kinetography Laban is a notation system for recording and analyzing human movement that was derived from the work of Rudolf Laban who described it in Schrifttanz in 1928. Technical standards and education for Labanotation are provided by several organizations, for example, the International Council of Kinetography Laban / Labanotation promotes standards and development for Labanotation. The Dance Notation Bureau has been using Labanotation to document dances since 1940 and it teaches Labanotation and arranges the staging of dances from the system scores. In the 1920s Rudolf Laban, in collaboration with colleagues, developed a system that could be used to describe movement in terms of spatial models. This contrasts with other movement notation systems based on analysis, letter codes, stick figures, music notes. The system precisely and accurately portrays temporal patterns, floor plans, body parts, labans notation system eventually evolved into modern-day Labanotation and Kinetography Laban.
Labanotation and Kinetography Laban evolved separately in the 1930s through 1950s, Labanotation in the United States and England, as a result of their different evolutionary paths, Kinetography Laban hasnt changed significantly since inception, whereas Labanotation evolved over time to meet new needs. For example, at the behest of members of the Dance Notation Bureau, Kinetography Laban practitioners, on the other hand, tend to work within the constraints of the existing notation system, using spatial description alone to describe movement. The International Council of Kinetography Laban was created in 1959 to clarify, thanks to this, one or both are currently used throughout the world almost interchangeably, and are readable to practitioners of either system. Each direction symbol indicates the orientation of a line between the proximal and distal points of a part or a limb. That is, the signs indicate the direction towards which the limbs must incline. The direction symbols are organized as three levels, high and low, Labanotation is a record of the facts, the framework of the movement, so that it can be reproduced.
The symbols are placed on a staff, the horizontal dimension of the staff represents the symmetry of the body. The location of a symbol on the staff defines the part it represents. The centre line of the staff represents the line of the body, symbols on the right represent the right side of the body, symbols on the left. The staff is read from bottom to top and the length of a symbol defines the duration of the movement, drawing on western music notation, Labanotation uses bar lines to mark the measures and double bar lines at the start and end of the movement score. The starting position of the dancer can be given before the bar lines at the start of the score. Movement is indicated as the transition from one point to the next, spatial distance, spatial relationships, transference of weight, centre of weight, body parts and floor plans can all be notated by specific symbols
Acrobatics is the performance of extraordinary feats of balance and motor coordination. It can be found in many of the arts, sports events. Although acrobatics is most commonly associated with human performance, it may apply to other types of performance. Acrobatic traditions are found in cultures, and there is evidence that the earliest such traditions occurred thousands of years ago. For example, Minoan art from c.2000 BC contains depictions of acrobatic feats on the backs of bulls, ancient Greeks and Romans practiced acrobatics, and the noble court displays of the European Middle Ages would often include acrobatic performances that included juggling. In China, acrobatics have been a part of the culture since the Western Han Dynasty, acrobatics were part of village harvest festivals. Acrobatics continues to be an important part of modern Chinese variety art, though the term initially applied to tightrope walking, in the 19th century, a form of performance art including circus acts began to use the term as well.
In the late 19th century and other acrobatic and gymnastic activities became competitive sport in Europe, acrobatics has often served as a subject for fine art. An aerialist is an acrobat who performs in the air, on a suspended apparatus such as a trapeze, cloud swing, aerial cradle, aerial pole, aerial silk, acrobatic gymnastics Contortion List of acrobatic activities
Classical ballet is any of the traditional, formal styles of ballet that exclusively employ classical ballet technique. It is known for its aesthetics and rigorous technique, its flowing, precise movements, there are stylistic variations related to an area or origin, which are denoted by classifications such as Russian ballet, French ballet, British ballet and Italian ballet. For example, Russian ballet features high extensions and dynamic turns, whereas Italian ballet tends to be grounded, with a focus on fast. Many of the variations are associated with specific training methods that have been named after their originators. Despite these variations, the performance and vocabulary of classical ballet are largely consistent throughout the world, Ballet originated in the Italian Renaissance courts and was brought to France by Catherine de Medici in the 16th Century. During ballets infancy, court ballets were performed by amateurs rather than professional dancers. Most of ballets early movements evolved from social dances and prominently featured stage patterns rather than formal ballet technique.
In the 17th century, as ballets popularity in France increased, no longer performed by amateurs, ballet performances started to incorporate challenging acrobatic movements that could only be performed by highly skilled street entertainers. In response, the worlds first ballet school, the Académie Royale de Danse, was established by King Louis XIV in 1661. The Academies purpose was to improve the quality of training in France. Shortly after the Academie was formed, in 1672, King Louis XIV established a company called the Academie Royal de Musique de Dance. While at the Academie Royal, Beauchamp revolutionized ballet technique by inventing the five positions of ballet, Ballet technique is the foundational principles of body movement and form used in ballet. A distinctive feature of ballet technique is turnout, which is the rotation of the legs emanating from the hip. There are five positions of the feet in ballet, all performed with turnout. When performing jumps and leaps, classical ballet dancers strive to exhibit ballon, pointe technique is the part of ballet technique that concerns pointe work, in which a ballet dancer supports all body weight on the tips of fully extended feet.
Students typically learn ballet terminology and the pronunciation and precise body form, emphasis is placed on developing flexibility and strengthening the legs and body core as a strong core is essential for turns and many other ballet movements. Depending on the teacher and training system, students may progress through various stages or levels of training as their skills advance, female attire typically includes pink or flesh colored tights, a leotard, and sometimes a short wrap-skirt, or a skirted leotard. Males typically wear black or dark tights, a white, or black, shirt or leotard worn under the tights
Sophisticated Ladies is a musical revue based on the music of Duke Ellington. The musical ran on Broadway in 1981, Sophisticated Ladies opened on Broadway at the Lunt-Fontanne Theatre on March 1,1981 and closed on January 2,1983 after 767 performances and fifteen previews. The musical was conceived by Donald McKayle, directed by Michael Smuin, and choreographed by McKayle, Henry LeTang, Bruce Heath, scenic design was by Tony Walton, costume design by Willa Kim and lighting design was by Jennifer Tipton. The original cast included Gregory Hines, Judith Jamison, Phyllis Hyman, Hinton Battle, Gregg Burge, Hines older brother Maurice joined the cast in the run. Its not a perfect entertainment - lets save the flaws for - but it rides so high on affection, skill and, of course, whats more, this is the only Broadway revue of recent vintage that operates on a truly grand scale. Sophisticated Ladies at the Internet Broadway Database Sophisticated Ladies at Floormic. com
University of the Arts (Philadelphia)
The University of the Arts is a university of visual and performing arts based in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Its campus makes up part of the Avenue of the Arts in Center City, dating back to the 1870s, it is one of the oldest schools of art or music in the United States. Many alumni have achieved notable success, the university was created in 1985 by the merger of the Philadelphia College of the Performing Arts and the Philadelphia College of Art, two schools that trace their origins to the 1870s. In 1870, the Philadelphia Musical Academy was created, and in 1877 the Philadelphia Conservatory of Music was founded, in 1944, the Childrens Dance Theatre, known as the Philadelphia Dance Academy, was established by Nadia Chilkovsky Nahumck. After establishing a School of Theater in 1983, the became the first performing arts college in Pennsylvania to offer a comprehensive range of majors in music, dance. This institution is now the College of Performing Arts of the University of the Arts, in 1876, the Pennsylvania Museum and School of Industrial Art was founded as a museum and art school.
In 1938, the changed its name to the Philadelphia Museum of Art. In 1964, the school became independent of the museum and renamed itself the Philadelphia College of Art. In 1996, the university added an academic division, the College of Media and Communication. The University of the Arts nearly 1,900 students are enrolled in 41 undergraduate and graduate programs in six schools, Design, Dance and the Ira Brind School of Theater Arts. In addition, the universitys Division of Continuing Studies offers courses through its Continuing Education, Pre-College, the Albert M. Greenfield Library houses 152,067 bound volumes,6,936 CDs,14,901 periodicals,16,820 scores and 1965 videos and DVDs. The Music Library collection holds about 20,000 scores,15,000 books,10,000 LP discs, the Visual Resources Collection includes 175,000 slides. Additional university collections include the University Archives, the Picture File, the Book Arts and Textile Collections, uArts 10 galleries include one curated by students.
Exhibitions have included the Quay Brothers, Vito Acconci, R, the University of the Arts currently has eight theaters. The Merriam Theater is the largest on campus with a capacity of 1,840. The Levitt Auditorium in Gershman Hall can seat 850, in Gershman Hall is a black box theater used for student-run productions. The universitys Arts Bank Theater seats 230, and the Laurie Beechman Cabaret Theater is located in the same building, the university utilizes the adjacent Drake Theater, primarily for dance productions. The Caplan Center for the Performing Arts, located on the 16 & 17th floor of Terra Hall – which opened in 2007 and its black box theater seats 100 and a recital hall seats 250
American Ballet Theatre
American Ballet Theatre is a classical ballet company based in New York City. It has an annual season at the Metropolitan Opera House in the spring and a shorter season at the David H. Koch Theater in the fall. ABT was founded in 1939 by Lucia Chase and Richard Pleasant and is recognized as one of the leading classical ballet companies. ABT is the parent company of the American Ballet Theatre Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis School, in 1939, Pleasant and Chase developed big ideas to create a large scale company with an eclectic repertory. They and a group from Mordorkin Ballet formed Ballet Theatre. During this period, American Ballet Theatre shifted its focus to recruiting ballet stars, in 1977, the company began its spring season at the Metropolitan Opera House, its new official venue, in 1980 Mikhail Baryshnikov became Artistic Director for American Ballet Theatre. Baryshnikov staged and refurbished numerous classical ballets and, according to the company, Baryshnikov was replaced by Jane Hermann and Oliver Smith in 1989, and the pair remained as Artistic Directors until in 1992 Kevin McKenzie was appointed.
McKenzie satisfied the demands of the traditional ballet audience by prioritizing full-length narrative ballets as well as succeeding in keeping the company afloat during financially unstable times and they are, Corps de Ballet and Principal. The American Ballet Theatres current Corps de Ballet includes, The American Ballet Theatres current apprentices includes
Fisk University is a private historically black university founded in 1866 in Nashville, United States. The 40-acre campus is a district listed on the National Register of Historic Places. In 1930, Fisk was the first African-American institution to gain accreditation by the Southern Association of Colleges, accreditations for specialized programs quickly followed. AMA support meant the organization tried to use its sources across the country to aid education for freedmen, enrollment jumped from 200 to 900 in the first several months of the school, indicating freedmens strong desire for education, with ages of students ranging from seven to seventy. The school was named in honor of General Clinton B, Fisk of the Tennessee Freedmens Bureau, who made unused barracks available to the school, as well as establishing the first free schools for white and black children in Tennessee. In addition, he endowed Fisk with a total of $30,000, the American Missionary Associations work was supported by the United Church of Christ, which retains an affiliation with the university.
Fisk opened to classes on January 9,1866, James Dallas Burrus, John Houston Burrus, Virginia E. Walker, and America W. Robinson graduated as well and became a member of the Fisk Jubilee Singers. Walker became a missionary while the Burrus brothers were both prominent educators and, during their careers, professors at Fisk. Cravath organized the College Department and the Mozart Society, the first musical organization in Tennessee, rising enrollment added to the needs of the university. In 1870 Adam Knight Spence became principal of the Fisk Normal School, with a strong interest in religion and the arts, Adam Spence supported the start of a student choir. In 1871 the student choir went on a tour in Europe. They toured to raise funds to build the first building for the education of freedmen and they raised nearly $50,000 and funded construction of the renowned Jubilee Hall, now a designated National Historic Landmark. On April 12,1873, the Jubilee Singers sailed for England where they sang before an audience in the presence of the Queen.
During the 1880s Fisk had a building program, as well as expanding its curriculum offerings. By the turn of the 20th century, it added black teachers and staff to the university, from 1915 to 1925, Fayette Avery McKenzie was President of Fisk. McKenzies tenure and after World War I, was during a turbulent period in American history, McKenzie was eventually forced to resign when his strict policies on dress code, extracurricular activities and other aspects of student life led to student protests. In 1947 Fisk heralded its first African-American president with the arrival of Charles Spurgeon Johnson, Johnson was a premier sociologist, a scholar who had been the editor of Opportunity magazine, a noted periodical of the Harlem Renaissance. In 1952, Fisk was the first predominantly black college to earn a Phi Beta Kappa charter, organized as the Delta of Tennessee Chapter of the Phi Beta Kappa National Honor Society that December, the chapter inducted its first student members on April 4,1953
San Francisco Ballet
San Francisco Ballet is a ballet company, founded in 1933 as the San Francisco Opera Ballet under the leadership of ballet master Adolph Bolm. The company is based in the War Memorial Opera House, San Francisco. San Francisco Ballet was the first professional company in the United States. It is among the leading dance companies, presenting more than 100 performances annually. Willam Christensen, Harold Christensen, and Lew Christensen made up the trio of brothers considered by many to have done more than anyone else to establish ballet in the United States. As vaudeville faded from American popular culture and Lew joined George Balanchines new company, American Ballet, in 1932, Willam formed a ballet school in Portland, Oregon, in 1937, he was engaged as principal male soloist by San Francisco Opera Ballet. He became the ballet master and choreographer in 1938. With his brother Harold, he purchased the company from the Opera in 1942, in 1951, Willam retired as director of SF Ballet and moved to Utah, where he started teaching ballet in the country’s first university ballet department at the University of Utah.
With a group of his students, he founded the Utah Civic Ballet in 1963, under Balanchines tutelage at American Ballet, Lew Christensen became the first American-born danseur noble. The United States Army drafted Christensen to fight in World War II, after the war ended, he joined Balanchines and Lincoln Kirsteins Ballet Society, eventually becoming ballet master, he served in the role from 1946 until 1950. In 1951, he joined his brother Willam as co-director of San Francisco Ballet, when Willam moved to Salt Lake City that year, Lew took over as full director of SF Ballet, he held the position until 1976, when Michael Smuin joined him as co-director. Lew Christensen remained SF Ballet co-director until 1984, the year of his death, in 1940, his brother Willam invited him to become director of the San Francisco Ballet School, and in 1942 he and Willam purchased the SF Ballet. Harold continued to serve as the director until his retirement in 1975. In 1938, the companys first major production was Coppélia, choreographed by Willam Christensen, in 1940, it staged Swan Lake, the first time that the ballet was produced in its entirety by an American company.
On Christmas Eve 1944, the company staged Nutcracker—the first complete production of Tchaikovskys most popular piece ever danced in the United States, in 1942, San Francisco Opera Ballet split into two independent companies and opera. The ballet half was sold to Willam and Harold Christensen, Willam became artistic director, while Harold took on the job of director of the San Francisco Ballet School. The San Francisco Ballet Guild was formed as an organization for San Francisco Ballet. The year 1951 marked a significant shift in administration of San Francisco Ballet, Lew Christensen—premier danseur at the time—partnered with his brother Willam Christensen as co-directors
He was, Among the first black men to break the racial barrier by means of modern dance. His talents extend beyond the stage as McKayle has performed and choreographed for Broadway musicals, television. He has worked with choreographers such as Martha Graham, Alvin Ailey, Anna Sokolow. A Tony Award and Emmy Award nominee, McKayle is currently a Professor of Dance, Modern Technique and Choreography, at UC Irvine and he has served on the faculties of Connecticut College, Sarah Lawrence College, and Bennington College. McKayle was born in New York City on July 6,1930, and grew up in a racially mixed East Harlem community of African-American, Puerto Rican and he was the second child of a middle class, immigrant family of Jamaican descent. Growing up in an integrated neighborhood shaped McKayles understanding of the issues and racial prejudices in America during a time when racism. McKayle was influenced by his parents liberal and activist lifestyles and he was exposed to social dance and the exuberant social atmosphere of the West Indian parties his parents attended.
McKayles educational experience attending a school outside of the Harlem community heightened his social awareness. His political beliefs were influenced by his high school English teacher Lewis Allen, known as Abel Meeropol, and in high school McKayle joined the Frederick Douglass Society to learn more about African-American history and heritage, a subject that was not taught in school. But it was a performance by Pearl Primus that sparked McKayles interest in dance as a teenager. Despite his lack of dance training, McKayle auditioned and was granted a scholarship for the New Dance Group in 1947. McKayle was ambitious and eagerly took advantage of the formal training in modern, tap, Afro-Caribbean, Hindu. His instructors included modern dance pioneer Martha Graham, Merce Cunningham, Anna Sokolow and his noted mentors are Sophie Maslow, Jane Dudley, William Bales, and his first teacher Jean Erdman. Other instructors include Mary Anthony, Pearl Primus, Jean-Leon Destine, Hadassah, in less than a year, McKayle was choreographing his own complete concert dance pieces.
McKayles early works explores the human condition and reflect themes of unity and community through expressive. At the age of 18 McKayle premiered his piece, Saturdays Child. This piece depicted the reality of poverty and the suffering of the homeless, according to McKayles autobiography, he was inducted into the Committee for the Negro in the Arts due to the repeated performance and high visibility of this piece. This organization was composed of Harlem Renaissance, leaders including Langston Hughes, the Committee was dedicated to changing the prejudices and widespread racism that made it difficult for African Americans in the performing arts
Paul Taylor (choreographer)
Paul Taylor is an American choreographer. He is among the last living members of the generation of America’s modern dance artists. Taylor was born in Wilkinsburg, and he grew up in and around Washington and he was a swimmer and student of painting at Syracuse University in the late 1940s. Upon discovering dance through books at the library, he transferred to Juilliard. In 1954 he assembled a company of dancers and began making his own works. A commanding performer despite his late start, he joined the Martha Graham Dance Company in 1955 for the first of seven seasons as soloist while continuing to choreograph on his own small troupe. In 1959 he was invited by Balanchine to be a guest artist with New York City Ballet, for Duet, a completely motionless work that was part of Seven New Dances, Martha Graham called him a naughty boy. A choreographer as concerned with matter as he is with form, many of Taylors pieces. Some movements are related for his love of insects and the way they move, other movements are influenced by his love of swimming.
In 2012 Mr. Taylor moved his Companys annual New York City performances to the David H. Koch Theater at Lincoln Center and these are accompanied at Lincoln Center by live music, whenever so intended by the choreographer, performed by Orchestra of St. Lukes. Ingalls, Donald York and Matthew Diamond, Taylor was a recipient of the Kennedy Center Honors in 1992 and received an Emmy Award for Speaking in Tongues, produced by WNET/New York the previous year. In 1993 he was awarded the National Medal of Arts by President Clinton and he received the Algur H. Awards for lifetime achievement include a MacArthur Foundation Fellowship – often called the “genius award” – and the Samuel H. Scripps American Dance Festival Award. Other awards include the New York State Governors Arts Award and the New York City Mayors Award of Honor for Art, in 1989 Taylor was elected one of ten honorary American members of the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters. Dancemaker, Matthew Diamond’s award-winning feature-length film about Taylor, was hailed by Time as perhaps the best dance documentary ever, Taylors Facts and Fancies, Essays Written Mostly for Fun, was published by Delphinium in 2013.
The choreographer’s works, now totaling 144, are performed by the world-renowned, 16-member Paul Taylor Dance Company, the chamber-sized Taylor 2, of his works 50 are documented in Labanotation. In each completed score there is a section Introductory Material, which includes such as, Stylistic Notes. A2015 documentary titled Paul Taylor, Creative Domain showcased his creative process and it was described as a fly-on-the-wall depiction of the 2010 creation of Three Dubious Memories, his 133rd modern-dance piece for the eponymous company that he founded 61 years ago