Happy Birthday Martha Graham!!
I was a dancer for 17 years. I started when I was three and finally hung up my shoes when I was 20. Over the years, I fell in love with the art form turning it into a way of life for me. While my friends were out at night hanging on street corners or causing trouble, most nights you could find me at the dance studio either teaching a class or taking one. I loved it. I almost chose it at as my major in college but decided my love of writing was stronger than my love of dance and quite frankly, I wasn't going to make it as a professional dancer anyway.
So imagine my excitement when I learned that to celebrate her 117th birthday, Google has created an animated doodle on their homepage honoring Martha Graham. It is truly beautiful, starting with a single figure and then morphing into four more in the style of modern choreography that Martha Graham introduced to the world.
Martha Graham was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania in 1894 . She began her dance career in 1925 when she was employed at the Eastman Music school. A year later, she established the Martha Graham Center for Contemporary Dance. Graham danced and choreographed well into her 70s although she did not allow much of her work to be recorded or photographed. According to Wikipedia she was also known to burn her diaries and other written record of her dances so that they may not be duplicated. She believed that her performances should only be seen live on stage.
Graham’s biography listed her final stage performance as her 1970 appearance in "Cortege of Eagles" when she was 76 years old. In the years after her departure from the stage Graham sunk into a deep depression, drowning her sorrows in a bottle of alcohol. But she overcame that in 1972, returned to her company and went on to choreograph ten more ballets and many more revivals until her death in 1991 when she was 96.Continued on the next page