Lynn GarafolaMar 8, 2022
Choreographer of the Modern
Oxford University Press 2022
Lynn Garafola's La Nijinska: Choreographer of the Modern (Oxford UP, 2022) is both readable and rigorous, a rare combination. As a historian and eminent dance scholar, Garafola brings her skills to the art of biography with acumen. We also get a deep sense of the woman and her works. The interview not only includes a discussion of Nijinska and the way in which her history has been overshadowed by her famous brother, as well as dance history which has foregrounded and celebrated male ballet choreographers, and modern choreographers after the first wave of women through the late 1940s, Garafola provides insights into Nijinska's works and suggests links for viewing the best productions to further understand this ephemeral art. What emerges from the interview is the story of a woman who survived revolutions, wars, geographic moves, misogyny, motherhood, and cared for her brother who was institutionalised, and continued to work as an artist through the end of her life.
Victoria Phillips is a Visiting Fellow at the London School of Economics in the Department of International History.