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Merce Cunningham: Fifty Years Hardcover – June 15, 2005


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Aperture; 1st edition (June 15, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0893816248
  • ISBN-13: 978-0893816247
  • Product Dimensions: 9.8 x 12.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,100,978 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Unlike so many biographies of dance maestros, Merce Cunningham: Fifty Years offers no litany of substance or psychological abuse. The volume, assembled by the archivist of Merce Cunningham's world-renowned U.S. company, records and analyzes Cunningham's work process and documents the provenance of his modern dance classics. Heavily spiced with biographical detail, Merce Cunningham packages the choreographer's life story in a lovely design that respects his whole body and conveys a rare sense of movement in its mass of still photos.

From Library Journal

For over 50 years, modern dancer and choreographer Cunningham (b. 1919) has been creating dances that challenge performers and audiences alike. His remarkable journey of discovery has been marked by four events: his work with composer John Cage to separate the music from the dance; the adoption of chance operations in choreography; the influence of film and video; and the use of LifeForms, a computer application or "three-dimensional human animation system." The dance company's archivist for more than 20 years, Vaughan documents performances, tours, residencies, and grants, beginning with Cunningham's first work in 1942, and lets the recollections of principals?dancers, designers, and composers?serve as descriptions of each work. Excerpts from Cunningham's eloquent and provocative writings and interviews are interspersed throughout. Vaughan's writing is in keeping with Cunningham's stated preference "to speak of dancing in terms of `facts,' " yet this adherence to "facts" is the volume's one limitation?we hear more about uncomfortable accommodations while on tour than the 1992 death of Cage, Cunningham's lifelong partner and colleague. Handsomely illustrated, this accurate and extensive accounting of Cunningham's illustrious career is an essential addition to dance collections.?Joan Stahl, National Museum of American Art, Washington, DC
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Sharon Unrau on August 1, 2000
Format: Hardcover
An excellent resource. Insightful. Beautiful pictures. Highly recommend for folks in dance education, collaborative artists, school teachers, dancers, and children.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
this book is a gem. Wonderful quotes from Merce plus many photos and text by David Vaughn, this book spans Merce Cunninghams entire life in dance. If you love modern dance, you will be thrilled to have this.
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By Kyle Gerhart on May 9, 2013
Format: Hardcover
The book was in excellent condition and I love every part of it! I studied the Merce Cinningham style in college and took his summer intensive the summer he passed away. What an amazing, talented and beautiful man, he is missed.
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