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Van Vechten, Carl (1880–1964)

Carl Van Vechten (b. 17 June 1880, Cedar Rapids, Iowa; d. 21 December 1964, New York City) was an American writer who wrote about music,…

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Dance

Historically, modern dance scholarship has followed the contours of the field as defined by John Martin, the revered dance critic for The New York Times,…

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Collins, Janet (1917–2003)

Magical on stage, elusive off stage, Janet Collins was an enigmatic and complex presence in twentieth-century dance. As the first full-time African American ballerina at…

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Ailey, Alvin (1931–1989)

Alvin Ailey counts among the most significant American choreographers of the second half of the twentieth century, and his company the Alvin Ailey American Dance…

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La Création du Monde

A ballet inspired by a creation fable in Blaise Cendrars’s Anthologie nègre (1921), La Création du monde (The Creation of the World) was produced by…

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Harlem Nightclubs

In the 1920s and 1930s, Harlem became a major hub of New York City nightlife and a prolific space for African American artistic creation. It…

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Okeke, Uche (1933--)

Born as Christopher Uchefuna Okeke in Anambra State, Nigeria in 1933, Uche Okeke is a founding father of Nigerian Modern Art. As one of the…

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Jook House

The jook house (also juke joint), an African American institution found mainly in semiurban areas in the Southern United States, is an important cultural phenomenon…

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Savoy Ballroom, The

The Savoy Ballroom, Harlem’s largest and most famous ballroom during the Swing Era, was nicknamed ‘The Home of Happy Feet’. After it opened in 1926,…

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Spencer, Penelope (1901–1993)

The career of the English “creative” dancer, choreographer, teacher, and dance writer Penelope Spencer spanned the period between the World Wars. Spencer’s versatile training and…

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Pomare, Eleo (1937–2008)

Eleo Pomare was a dancer, choreographer, educator, and social activist who spent more than five decades contributing to the development of modern dance. As a…

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Beatty, Talley (1919–1995)

Talley Beatty, whose career began in the mid-1930s and extended six decades, was a leading modern dance artist. He was a prolific choreographer, exquisite dancer,…

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African Hip-Hop

There are several features that distinguish African Hip-Hop music from the genre’s American origins. Principal targets of its social critique such as disenfranchisement and social…

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Primitivism

Primitivism in modern art designates a range of practices and accompanying modes of thought that span the period from the mid-nineteenth to the mid-twentieth century…