Why Modern Dance is Cool, Sexy, Accessible

Nov 25, 2010

I first heard of Paul Taylor about three weeks ago, and at the beginning I - admittedly - didn't understand the relevancy of his work. How does this relate to me? To today? To the here and now?

But as I continued to dig deeper and deeper into Taylor's body of work, I started to notice that Paul Taylor is a man consistently ahead of his time. Today my generation has reality TV shows, and we have created this ultra-glamorized notion of "everyday people." But the joke is on us, because Paul Taylor has been doing that for years. His work celebrates the commonplace, the beautiful, the tragic, the sensual, the comic, the ugly of the things we see everyday. Unlike reality TV, though, Taylor does it with style.

So when I had to think of a way to talk to my peers about Paul Taylor, I took advantage of all the common stereotypes that keep college students from going to a modern dance concert.

"It's not cool."

"It's not sexy."

"I don't get it."

These are common gripes students give when asked about modern dance. The posters that I created flip these stereotypes on their ear, showing how Paul Taylor's work embodies a rebelliousness, a sensuality and an accessibility that are cool, but that are, above all, timeless.

-Ann B. Erickson is a senior at the University of Minnesota, studying Theatre Arts and Strategic Communication.



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