Merce Cunningham

Merce Cunningham (1919–2009) is considered one of the most important choreographers of all time. In his ideological simplicity and physical complexity, his approach to performance was pioneering. Born in Centralia, Washington, he began to dance at an early age. At the Cornish School he got to know the work of Martha Graham, who later invited him to join her company in New York. But his most important influence was John Cage, his closest collaborator and life partner. Cunningham also worked with Robert Rauschenberg, Andy Warhol and David Tudor. In 1953 he founded his own company, which worked constantly until 2011, and he continued his choreographic research until he passed away in 2009. In the course of his artistic career he created 190 dances and over ‘700 events’. Thanks to the Merce Cunningham Trust his vision lives on, and his choreographies are performed and renewed by outstanding companies around the world.