In the 1960s Anna Halprin merged dance performance and dance therapy. Students experienced one of Anna Halprins ritual dances by running in a spiraling circle at different speeds. Watch the power of dance as students dedicate who they were running for at the beginning the ritual.
Before Merce Cunningham, John Cage and the Postmoderns, music and story were primary sources of structure and inspiration for dance. The challenge to this longstanding convention opened a new world of possibilities for dance making.
I really like using words and visual imagery to think of movements. Writing things down is a great way to organize my ideas and remember things, and it is also true for recording movements. I plan to do more writing in the future when planning dances.
- Rachel Ryan
Judson Dance Theater choreographers played with movement tasks involving objects as a way to make new, untraditional movement. View the different solutions students found for maneuvering props from one person to the next and across the room. This activity prepped students for learning Yvonne Rainers dance Chair/Pillow.
1960s Issue Dances
In the 1960s many artists, including Judson Dance Theater choreographers were using their work to make political, social, and environmental statements. Students worked in groups brainstorming and researching an issue (Vietnam War, Womens Rights, and Civil Rights) and created dances presenting both sides of the complex issue.