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Steve Paxton

Author: Martha MyersGerald MyersDouglas RosenbergCharles ReinhartStephanie ReinhartAll authors
Publisher: Oregon, Wis. : American Dance Festival Video, ©1996.
Series: Speaking of dance, 15.
Edition/Format:   VHS video : VHS tape : NTSC color broadcast system   Visual material : EnglishView all editions and formats
Database:WorldCat
Summary:
Steve Paxton recalls beginning his long career in dance in Arizona, following his training in gymnastics. He describes the predominant novelistic and literary bias of modern dance (exemplified by the works of Martha Graham) during his early years of study at Connecticut College, and the contrasting painterly/scientific stage vision of Alwin Nikolais. Turning to the subject of Merce Cunningham, in whose company he  Read more...
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Details

Genre/Form: Educational films
Dance
Interviews
Video
Named Person: Steve Paxton; Steve Paxton; Martha Graham; Alwin Nikolais; Merce Cunningham; John Cage; Robert Rauschenberg; Robert Ellis Dunn; John Cage; Merce Cunningham; Robert Ellis Dunn; Martha Graham; Alwin Nikolais; Steve Paxton; Robert Rauschenberg
Material Type: Videorecording
Document Type: Visual material
All Authors / Contributors: Martha Myers; Gerald Myers; Douglas Rosenberg; Charles Reinhart; Stephanie Reinhart; American Dance Festival.; American Dance Festival Video (Firm)
OCLC Number: 50665461
Notes: Series subtitle: Conversations with contemporary masters of American modern dance.
Credits: Executive producers, Charles Reinhart and Stephanie Reinhart, American Dance Festival.
Performer(s): Interviewers: Martha Myers, Dr. Gerald Myers.
Description: 1 videocassette (78 min.) : sd., col. NTSC ; 1/2 in. (VHS)
Series Title: Speaking of dance, 15.
Responsibility: presented by the American Dance Festival ; directed and produced by Douglas Rosenberg.

Abstract:

Steve Paxton recalls beginning his long career in dance in Arizona, following his training in gymnastics. He describes the predominant novelistic and literary bias of modern dance (exemplified by the works of Martha Graham) during his early years of study at Connecticut College, and the contrasting painterly/scientific stage vision of Alwin Nikolais. Turning to the subject of Merce Cunningham, in whose company he danced, he discusses the ramifications of Cunningham's use of chance procedures ; and describes the vicissitudes of touring with Cunningham's company, which included composer John Cage and artist Robert Rauschenberg. Providing a dancer's view of performing Cunningham's choreography, he contrasts it with contact improvisation and the work of Cunningham's contemporaries Graham, Helen Tamiris, and José Limón. He discusses his participation in Robert Ellis Dunn's dance workshop and its outgrowth, Judson Dance Theater, and recalls the artistic ferment of the times. He discusses contact improvisation, which he began to teach at Bennington College and introduced to New York City in 1972. Other topics include his attraction to the Japanese martial art of aikido ; making a living in dance ; the longevity of modern dancers as performers ; modern dance as an antidote to traditional western attitudes towards the body.

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