Carolyn Carlson

(b. 1943)

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(b Oakland, Calif., 7 Mar. 1943)

US dancer, choreographer and director. She studied at Utah University, at the San Francisco Ballet School, and with Alwin Nikolais, with whom she danced (1965–71). She then moved to Paris, and performed and choreographed for companies in France, Germany, and Italy. From 1973 to 1980 she was danseuse étoile chorégraphique at the Paris Opera, where she founded the Groupe de Recherches Théâtrales de l'Opéra. For Paris she made Densité, 21.5 (mus. Varèse), L'Or des fous (mus. G. Arrigo), and Les Fous d'or (mus. I. Wakhevitch, 1973), Sablier prison (mus. various), Il y'a juste un instant (mus. Barre Phillips, 1974), and Wind, Water, Sand (1976). She also created the leading role in Tetley's Tristan (Paris Opera, 1974). She directed her own group at the Teatro la Fenice in Venice (1980–5), where she played an important role in encouraging younger choreographers, then returned to Paris in the mid-1980s, where she similarly exerted a significant influence on the modern dance scene. She subsequently created work for the Folkwang Ballet in Essen, Nederlands Dans Theater and the Finnish National Ballet. Between 1993–5 she was artistic director of Cullberg Ballet, then worked largely as a solo artist, performing both choreographed and improvised material, while additionally creating work for other companies, including Signes (1997, Paris Opera Ballet). In 1999 she founded her own studio in Paris, as a centre for international teachers, then in 2005 was appointed director of the Choreographic Centre in Roubaix Nord Pas de Calais (Ballet du Nord) for which she has since choreographed several works including Full Moon (2006). Between 1999 and 2002 she directed the Dance section of the Venice Biennale, during which time she founded the city's dance academy, Isola Danza.

Subjects: Dance.

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