Birds Eye View: Dancing With Martha Graham And On Broadway

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9780822939801: Birds Eye View: Dancing With Martha Graham And On Broadway
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An autobiography of Martha Graham’s protoge who went on to work with every major Broadway choreographer of the 1930s and 40s. It provides invaluable insights into Graham’s teaching while telling anecdotes about working on the Great White Way.

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From the Inside Flap:

"A fascinating glimpse of life inside Graham’s charmed circle, and a moving record of one dancer’s determined pursuit of a career."—Kirkus Reviews

"Bird is a storyteller gifted with vivid powers of observation and a witty and often wicked humor. . . . There is as much here for the dance scholar as for those who simply love a good story, a feat that Bird executes with impressive grace."—Jennifer Dunning, dance critic, New York Times

"A rare gift, a performer’s reminiscence that situates a career into a wider cultural context."—Stagebill

"An invaluable book for professionals, students, and those who are eager to know about the awesome dimensions of Martha Graham."—Backstage

"The most interesting inside account of the development of early modern dance I have had the good fortune to read."—Sondra Fraleigh, author of Dance and the Lived Body

Dorothy Bird (1912–1996) was a hand-picked member of Martha Graham’s dance troupe from 1930 to 1937. Following a decade-long career on Broadway—during which time she worked with Balanchine, Helen Tamiris, Jerome Robbins, and other major choreographers—she retired from the stage and taught dance to generations of students on Long Island. Joyce Greenberg, who studied with Bird, lives in upstate New York.

From the Back Cover:

Bird's Eye View is a warm and human story that chronicles the early development of modern dance from a dancer's perspective. Dorothy Bird was the only dancer of her time to work with all the major choreographers in concert and on Broadway: George Balanchine, Agnes de Mille, Doris Humphrey, Helen Tamiris, Anna Sokolow, Herbert Ross, Jose Limon, and Jerome Robbins, among others. She recounts fascinating theater experiences with such luminaries as Orson Welles, Gertrude Lawrence, Carol Channing, Danny Kaye, and Elia Kazan. Dorothy shares her methods and experiences as a teacher for Balanchine and her twenty-five-year tenure at the Neighborhood Playhouse to highlight her philosophy of "giving back" to the next generation of performers. Of all the artists Dorothy Bird worked with, Martha Graham figures most strongly in the book and in her life. Her narrative about Graham's early creative process is a valuable addition to the literature, as is the story of her personal involvement with Graham. The reader gains an intimate insight into the love and fear instilled by Graham in her followers.

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Bird, Dorothy, Greenberg, Joyce
Published by University of Pittsburgh Press (1997)
ISBN 10: 0822939800 ISBN 13: 9780822939801
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Dorothy Bird, Joyce Greenberg
Published by University of Pittsburgh Press (1997)
ISBN 10: 0822939800 ISBN 13: 9780822939801
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