About Muses of Modern Dance

Envisioned by Patricia Ward as an early modern dance fantasy that brings to life three American iconic modern dance founders, Isadora Duncan, Loie Fuller and Ruth St. Denis, Muses of Modern Dance combines historic choreographies with contemporary re-imaginings. With the exacting and luminous performances of Jeanne Bresicani, Jody Sperling and Livia Vanaver, all accomplished artists as soloists and ensemble dancers, Ward’s vision became a reality in May, 2010.

Muses Of Modern Dance™ weaves an enduring dance tapestry, threading the past to the future of modern dance.  Audiences are inspired to experience dance history and theatric innovation through a contemporary lens.  Premier modern dance exponents, Jeanne Bresciani and Livia Vanaver reanimating Isadora Duncan and Ruth St. Denis respectively and Jody Sperling inspired by the works of Loie Fuller, command the quintessential nature of this legendary American modern dance trio. The tour de force performance portrayals given by Bresciani, Sperling and Vanaver are reborn within the Muses Of Modern Dance™.

The repertoire within MOMD is rich and varied as the legacies of the dance pioneers themselves.  The full performance program often  Isadora’s  bouyant and joyful Roses from the South to her tragic Ode To Aphrodite , Jody Sperling’s choreography of The Elements and Clair de lune in the tradition of Loie Fuller, and St. Denis’ White Jade, Peacock and Bakawali Nautch are being offered. MOMD offers the theatre performance opportunity as well as educational workshops and master classes conducted by Bresciani, Sperling and Vanaver. Workshops and master classes are adaptable for participants within the academic as well as general public populations.

America’s pre-eminent modern dance revolutionaries Isadora Duncan, Loie Fuller, and Ruth St. Denis emancipated the world of dance through their artistic passion, primacy of vision and an intuitive conception of art beyond the superficial. At the turn of the 20th Century, these American female dancers were at the forefront of artistic and feminist enlightenment. They were not simply innovators of a worldwide trend but true patriot founders of a distinct new art form discovered by Americans, evoking the American spirit and steeped in the values of beauty, truth, strength and freedom.  Duncan, Fuller, and St. Denis shattered traditional conventions of dance to mold it toward the forms in which we today enjoy.

Muses Dancing

Wendy Liberatore writes that Muses of Modern Dance is a "loving tribute to three of modern dance’s essential pioneers: Loie Fuller, Isadora Duncan and Ruth St. Denis. What this living trio — Jodi Sperling, Jeanne Bresciani and Livia Vanaver — did at Kaatsbaan International Dance Center was more than restage the works of these matriarchs of this American art form. They imbued these groundbreaking, and often revolutionary, dances with a spirit of the very creators themselves. And in so doing, these three living dancers furthered Fuller, Duncan and St. Denis’ status as goddesses who are worthy of infinite worship."