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Merce (1919-2009)


"Mr. Cunningham’s most celebrated and revolutionary achievement, shared with the composer John Cagewas to have dance and music created independently of each other. His choreography showed that dance was principally about itself, not music, while often suggesting that it could also be about many other things." (Alastair Macaulay, NY Times, 7/27/09)

I've had the chance to see the MCDC perform on at least half-a-dozen occasions - including several featuring Cunningham himself - and would argue that the astringent, chance-driven music he used (often by his on- and offstage partner John Cage), had a symbiotic relationship to his dances: sometimes complementing, sometimes conflicting. And yet, at all times, completely captivating, like witnessing a primal, atavistic rite. It was, in short, as good as art gets.