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Dance Choreographers

Famous Dance Choreographers of Past and Present


If you've ever watched a ballet or other dance performance, you have witnessed the work of a dance choreographer. Dance choreographers create original dances and develop new interpretations of existing dances. The works of choreographers highlight the extent of their love of and devotion to their particular styles of dance. Though not complete, the following list highlights some of the best dance choreographers of the past and present.

1. George Balanchine (1904-1983)

Regarded as the foremost contemporary choreographer in the world of ballet, George Balanchine served as the artistic director and primary choreographer of the New York City Ballet.

2. Paul Taylor (1930-present)

An American choreographer of the 20th century, Paul Taylor is considered by many to be the greatest living choreographer.

3. Bob Fosse (1927-1987)

One of the most influential men in jazz dance history, Bob Fosse created a unique dance style that is practiced in dance studios throughout the world.

4. Alvin Ailey (1931-1989)

Alvin Ailey was an African-American dancer and choreographer. He is remembered by many as a modern dance genius. His spiritual and gospel background, along with his desire to enlighten and entertain, formed the backbone of his unique choreography.

5. Katherine Dunham (1909-2006)

Katherine Dunham's dance company helped pave the way for future famous dance theatres. Often referred to as the "matriarch of black dance," she helped to establish black dance as an art form in America.

6. Agnes de Mille (1905-1993)

Agnes de Mille was an American dancer and choreographer. She contributed her amazing choreography to both 20th-century ballet and Broadway musical theater.

7. Shane Sparks (1974-present)

Hip-hop choreographer Shane Sparks is best known for his role as a judge and choreographer on the reality television dance competitions "So You Think You Can Dance" and "America's Best Dance Crew."

8. Martha Graham (1894-1991)

Through her choreography, Martha Graham pushed the art of dance to new limits. She founded the Martha Graham Dance Company, the oldest, most celebrated modern dance company in the world.
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