La Biennale di Venezia

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23 June 2017

Lucinda Childs

Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievement

Awards Ceremony

Friday 23 June 2017

Teatro alle Tese - 9.30 pm

Lucinda Childs

The Golden Lion for Lifetime Achievement in Dance has been awarded to Lucinda Childs.

 Dancer and choreographer Lucinda Childs has left her mark on the history of contemporary dance. She was the first to introduce the concepts of minimalism and reiteration to dance. Throughout her career, she has created choreographic works for great dance companies, and in recent years has choreographed and staged many works from the classic and contemporary repertoire, bringing new momentum to her work. A significant moment in her career was her collaboration with theatre director Robert Wilson and composer Philip Glass on the opera Einstein on the Beach, which has become a milestone in the dance repertory.

Biographical notes  

Lucinda Childs (New York, 26 June 1940) – Lucinda Childs' career began in 1963 at the Judson Dance Theater where she choreographed thirteen works and performed in pieces by Yvonne Rainer, Steve Paxton, and Robert Morris. In 1973 she formed the company that bears her name, with which she has created over fifty works, both solo and ensemble.

In 1976, she collaborated with Robert Wilson and Philip Glass on the opera Einstein on the Beach, as principal performer and choreographer, a production for which she received a Village Voice Obie award. In the subsequent revival in 1984, Childs choreographed the two interludes for the opera, titled "Field Dances". Childs has appeared in many of Wilson's major works including: Maladie de la Mort by Marguerite Duras, I Was Sitting on my Patio This Guy Appeared I Thought I Was Hallucinating also by Wilson, Quartett by Heiner Muller, the opera White Raven by Wilson and Glass, and Arvo Part’s Adams Lament. She also collaborated with Robert Wilson and Mikhail Baryshnikov on Letter to a Man.

In 1979, she received a Guggenheim Fellowship for Dance, with music by Philip Glass and film décor by Sol LeWitt. In a Washington Post review of the production, Alan M. Kriegsman wrote: "a few times, at most, in the course of a decade a work of art comes along that makes a genuine breakthrough, defining for us new modes of perception and feeling and clearly belonging as much to the future as to the present. Such a work is Dance".

Since 1981, Lucinda Childs has choreographed over thirty works for major ballet companies such as the Paris Opera Ballet, Les Ballets de Monte Carlo, Baryshnikov's White Oak Dance Company, the Rambert Dance Company, the Martha Graham Company, MaggioDanza. She has also worked as choreographer and more recently both choreographer and director for sixteen opera productions including Mozart's Zaide for La Monnaie in Brussels, Stravinsky's Le Rossignoland Oedipus Rex, Vivaldi's Farnace, and Handel's Alessandro, voted "Opera of the Year" by Mezzo-TV in 2013. In 2014, she directed a new production of Dr. Atomic by John Adams for the Opera du Rhin and Atysby Jean Baptiste Lully withGluck's Orfeo ed Euridice for Opera Kiel in Germany.

In 2009 the Summerscape Festival at Bard College commissioned the revival of Dance, which continues to tour in the United States and Europe and is currently included in the repertory of the Ballet de l'Opéra de Lyon. Available Light (1983) with music by John Adams and set design by architect Frank Gehry was revived for the 2015-16 season. She recently choreographed Beethoven’s Grosse Fugue for the Ballet de l'Opéra de Lyon, which premiered in November 2016.

Childs received the Bessie Award for Sustained Achievement in 2001, and was elevated from the rank of Officer to Commander in France's Ordre des Arts et des Lettres in 2004. In 2009 she received the NEA/NEFA American Masterpiece Award.

Biennale Danza
Biennale Danza