Chop Me Up a Story

Ancient & Postmodern, Irish & American, Lives & Deaths

A month earlier to the day, on this side of the ocean, the modern dance world lost Pauline Koner. Tiny, vivid, deeply dramatic—unforgettable—in the dances of Doris Humphrey and José Limón and in her own work, she was also an extraordinary teacher and coach. Nuance was everything. I can remember rehearsal minutes ticking away while Pauline taught us exactly how to feel air on the backs of our hands as we gestured. Young and impatient, I didn't fully appreciate such subtleties. I do now.

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