Masters of Movement: Portraits of America's Great ChoreographersWhy I am recommending this book:
The mind of an artist, the rhythms and the way and the why of how they live fascinates me because I feel that artists and their creations contribute so much to what makes us all more human.
I bought this book as a gift for someone and then I went back and got one for myself. It is beautifully photographed and wonderfully written and very hard to put down.
One might quibble with the title of this volume of photographic portraits and interviews-several of the subjects, like Edward Villella and Ann Reinking, are more notable as dancers than as choreographers. And one might wonder about omissions: the great tap dancer Gregory Hines is here, but why not Savion Glover? Nevertheless, both Eichenbaum's black-and-white images and her subects' words will please dance lovers. Her range of styles is broadly inclusive: from ballet (Eliot Feld) to jazz (Luigi), flamenco (José Greco) to music videos (Vincent Patterson, who has choreographed for Michael Jackson and Madonna). Eichenbaum captures the essence of each dancer she profiles: nonagenarian Katherine Dunham tells an audience, "I am still unfulfilled... I am rich and full, but I know there is so much more to learn." Eichenbaum can be delightfully unfawning: her double exposure of a temperamental and uncooperative Mark Morris is, she writes, "a sort of illustrated inflated ego." Other celebrity choreographers include Susan Stroman and Judith Jamison, but many of her subjects will be known only to those who follow the dance scene closely. For those aficionados, this is a lovely gift book.