Nov 8-12, 2018

Paul Taylor: Creative Domain

Cast: Paul Taylor, Peter Elyakim Taussig, James Samson, Amy Young

Run Time: 86 minutes USA Language: English


Among the most acclaimed choreographers in American history, Paul Taylor has been reinventing the roles of music, movement, and theme in dance for nearly 60 years. In that time, he has offered only glimpses into his creative process. Kate Geis’ brilliant portrait is a rare in-depth documentation of how he creates a single dance. Through the lens of the award-winning cinematographer Tom Hurwitz, we see Paul’s non-verbal communication with his dancers.

Geis begins with Taylor dancing in his youth, describing the nature of dance as ‘you learn to live day to day, hour to hour.’ Then, we visit him present day, now in his 80s, still living his life in the moment, with his mind intently focused on his next dance. His new work is a Rashomon-inspired exploration of memory, three characters entangled in a tragic relationship, and each believing only in their own dark memory of it. Below the surface of this dance, and the many works that came before, is Paul’s power of acute observation, revealing a side to his choreography that is strangely prophetic.

We see the hard work, of course, but also the practical solutions to practical problems, as Mr. Taylor moves bodies this way and that, giving simple commands. Through it all, Mr. Taylor’s creative mysteries remain intact; a master of the casual and the vernacular (a good way to learn about movement, he says, is to watch football halftime shows), he nonetheless approaches the mystical.

– Rachel Saltz, The New York Times

Film Details

USA, 2014
Directed by Kate Geis
Cinematography by Tom Hurwitz
Editing by Kate Geis
Music by Peter Taussig
Cast: Paul Taylor, Peter Elyakim Taussig, James Samson, Amy Young

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