Cohen, Selma Jeanne: The Modern Dance - Seven Statements of Belief

Cohen, Selma Jeanne: The Modern Dance - Seven Statements of Belief
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Publication Year: 2011
CONTRIBUTORS: Jose Limon, Anna Sokolow, Erick Hawkins, Donald McKayle, Alwin Nikolas, Pauline Koner, Paul Taylor.
Published by: Wesleyan University Press, 106 pages

Contents

Introduction: THE CATERPILLAR'S QUESTION
WHEN I asked these choreographers to write about the modern dance, I anticipated the possibility of their feeling somewhat as Alice did when the Caterpillar took the hookah out of its mouth and addressed her in a languid, sleepy voice, saying: "Who are you!" To which Alice replied: "I — I hardly know, Sir, just at present — at least.


AN AMERICAN ACCENT
THE ballet as an art is an old and established tradition, not the least of the many splendors of European civilization. One cannot perial Russia, which saw it to its glittering maturity, reveal them-selves to the world in every movement, gesture, and configuration of their prodigious creature. The great Medici were not only states-.


THE REBEL AND THE BOURGEOIS
I hate academies. I hate fixed ideas of what a thing should be, of how it should be done. I don't like imposing rules, because the person,the artist, must do what he feels is right, what he — as an individual— feels he must do. If we establish an academy, there can be no fu-ture for the modern dance. An art should be constantly changing; it.


PURE POETRY
THE first time I saw pictures of Isadora Duncan, I simply fell in love with her with all the ardent tenderness that a young man of seventeen brings to such a love. Later on I saw pictures of Shanta Rao and fell in love again, and later still, when I saw her on stage — with her irresistible, sensuous female radiance — I fell even more in love with.


THE ACT OF THEATRE
DANCE is my medium and theatre is my home. It is here that I find must bear the personal stamp of the creator if it is to reach out to the viewer in its ultimate role, which is communication. This is the key factor: the communication between artist and audience. This is what creates that indefinable electricity, which is essential to theatre.


NO MAN FROM MARS
IT is impossible for me to be a purist; my loves are too many for that. I am excited by things very old and also very new, and by so many things in between as well.


INTRINSIC DANCE
MODERN dance — I would rather think of it as intrinsic dance — basic, essential, organic, internal — as opposed to extrinsic, the kind of dance that is composed from the outside, not motivated by the inner necessity of the creator's being. I find so much in dance today that seems to come only.


DOWN WITH CHOREOGRAPHY
A lot of dance writers, it seems, neglect to write about what most people notice first when they go to see dancing. The writers go on about dance theories, dance history, the costumes, the music, the choreography, and even the audience. In short, everything but the thing that all dancing depends on first and last. It is time more should.


CONTRIBUTORS
."A man of dignity," said his citation for the Capezio Award in 1964,"whose years of intense struggle have culminated in his position as indisputably the foremost male dancer in the field of the American struggle before he became a leading dancer for Doris Humphrey and director. With his group, he has toured Europe, South America, and.

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