On Friday I had a rare treat--free tickets to see the Martha Graham Dance Company perform classic selections from their repertoire as well as Aaron Copland's Appalachian Spring. Copland is my favorite composer and Appalachian Spring is one of my favorite pieces.
I had never seen a performance by the Martha Graham Dance Company, but now that I know more of the history and her choreography, I can see the impact she had on modern dance, since certain movements show up in other performances I've seen. Some of the choreography reminded me of the dancing in Oklahoma!, especially in the dream sequence.
Here's the description of Appalachian Spring from Popejoy Hall's website:
Martha Graham transformed dance, opening the way for dancers to express the fullest range of human emotions. Aaron Copland created iconic music for our country that sang in the hearts of Americans. While composing “Appalachian Spring,” he called it simply “Ballet for Martha.” Graham used his music to tell the story of newlyweds in a Shaker region of western Pennsylvania and her ballet is as simple and direct as its subject. Both music and dance have become American classics. The company will also perform other selections from their repertoire.
We're fortunate to have a "benefactress" who is a very wealthy woman, a patron of the performing arts, who periodically invites us to a performance when she has extra tickets. She buys an entire block of season tickets so she can invite friends. Sometimes we get lucky when her friends have other plans!