Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Merce Cunningham 1919-2009

It has been a summer of passing icons and now the dance world says farewell to beautiful Merce Cunningham. About three months ago someone said to me, "it must be wonderful to be you and meet so many artists, who was the most exciting person you've ever met?" A moment passed while I studied the table and measured whether I should tell them about about actor x they knew from television or singer y that I was sure they had programmed into their i-pod, then I told them about having dinner with Merce Cunningham. How being in the presence of a soft-spoken gentleman who preferred talking about birds and butterflies was for me one of the most sublime experiences in my twenty years in the arts. To be in the presence of beauty, to watch his eighty-three year old hands dance as he talked about a thrush or a finch, to see an artist's imagination at work... profound. My condolences to those who knew him intimately.

Visit the Merce Cunningham Dance Company web-site to learn about the Cunningham Dance Foundation's Legacy Plan http://www.merce.org/. You can see the company this Fall at Krannert Center and at Dance Center of Columbia College.

be well

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