Judson Dance Theater

Al Giese’s photograph of Ruth Emerson in Carolee Schneemann’s _Newspaper Event_. Performed at _Concert of Dance #3_, Judson Memorial Church, January 29, 1963. © Estate of Al Giese/Licensed by VAGA, New York, NY. Courtesy of Carolee Schneemann, Galerie Lelong & Co., and P•P•O•W, New York

Concert of Dance #3. 1963 293

Al Giese’s photograph of Ruth Emerson in Carolee Schneemann’s Newspaper Event. Performed at Concert of Dance #3, Judson Memorial Church, January 29, 1963. © Estate of Al Giese/Licensed by VAGA, New York, NY. Courtesy of Carolee Schneemann, Galerie Lelong & Co., and P•P•O•W, New York

ANA JANEVSKI: Concert of Dance #3 took place in the basement gym of Judson Church. The performers used the basketball court as their stage, and the audience sat around the edges, watching. These images capture the nine dances presented that night.

YVONNE RAINER: We were interested in introducing everyday actions and movements to the formal theatrical space. I like to call it opening up the palace gates of high art, which had previously been closed.

ANA JANEVSKI: The evening began with a group of dancers performing We Shall Run by Yvonne Rainer:

YVONNE RAINER: The only movement was trotting around and there were dance-trained people and untrained people in it. I always wanted to have my cake and eat it, too. So I had pedestrian movement on the one hand, and on the other, they had this glorious inflated grandiose music, that was originally for 300 voices and cannon going off.

ANA JANEVSKI: Steve Paxton and Yvonne Rainer later performed a quiet duet called Word Words:

STEVE PAXTON: We did it as nude as we could be. Yvonne wore pasties and a g-string and I wore a g-string. I think it's a sign of something if you start questioning the conventions that you're part of, and I had never been nude in front of an audience before. In the section where I wasn’t dancing, I felt it incredibly. I had never felt so exposed. I think it broke me of my stage fright.

THOMAS J. LAX: The evening ended with a collage of bodies, improvised movement, and newspapers created by Carolee Schneemann:

CAROLEE SCHNEEMANN: For Newspaper Event, I wanted each participant to have a separate score of actions that they would undertake with a newspaper. Either building with it, shredding it, combining it with their bodies. Oddly enough, there was a newspaper strike in New York, and there was suddenly no newspaper around. You had to find eccentric people who had saved some in their basement or in the attic and it was quite an ordeal.

CAROLEE SCHNEEMANN: We were all sharing this sense that the culture had to be changed and we could do it.

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