Delve Into Dunham

posted by Siobhan Burke on Thursday, Dec 13, 2012
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Katherine Dunham, probably in a Universal publicity shot for the 1948 movie Casbah. Dance Magazine Archives.

There are fewer than 20 instructors in the world certified to teach Katherine Dunham technique, and one of them is coming to Brooklyn this weekend. Penny Godboldo, who worked directly with the groundbreaking choreographer/anthroplogist and trained with former members of her company, has been passing down the Dunham method—grounded in a blend of ballet, modern, and Haitain folkloric dance—since 1993. Her workshop takes place this Sunday, Dec. 16, at Cumbe: Center for African and Diaspora Dance, 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Godboldo will also teach at Cumbe on Jan. 20.

If you can't make it to the workshop, you can still read about Dunham as a socially conscious choreographer ahead of her time in our December issue. Pick up a copy (in print or digital form) and turn to page 63 for Donna Bryson's story "A Lost Protest," which chronicles the history of a ballet so controversial that it wasn't performed in the U.S. until this past September.