(HUDSON, N.Y.) – Choreographer Twyla Tharp will speak about the creative process and her life’s work at Basilica Hudson on Thursday, March 31, at 7pm, in the North Hall. Tharp recently celebrated her dance company’s 50th anniversary season, and the publication of her book, “The Creative Habit.” Admission is free and open to the public.
Over the course of her career, which spans six decades, Twyla Tharp has received numerous awards for work that expands the boundaries of ballet and modern dance, including one Tony Award, two Emmy Awards, nineteen honorary doctorates, the 2004 National Medal of the Arts, and many more. Twyla Tharp has choreographed more than 160 works and continues to create.
“The Creative Habit” will be available for purchase at the Basilica event, and Tharp will do a signing after her talk. Books will be provided by Karen Schoemer, Bookseller, in cooperation with the Book House of Stuyvesant Plaza.
Twyla Tharp has choreographed more than one hundred sixty works including individual dances, television specials, Hollywood movies, full-length ballets, and Broadway shows. Over the course of her career, which spans six decades, she has received numerous awards for work that expands the boundaries of ballet and modern dance. She received a Tony Award for Best Choreography and the Drama Desk Award for Outstanding Choreography for the 2002 musical “Movin’ Out,” and a Drama Desk nomination for Outstanding Choreography for the musical “Singin’ in the Rain.” She also is the recipient of the 2004 National Medal of the Arts, the 2008 Jerome Robbins Prize, and a 2008 Kennedy Center Honor. Tharp is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the American Philosophical Society, and an Honorary Member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters.
In 1965, Tharp founded her dance company, Twyla Tharp Dance. Her dances, which combine different forms and styles of movement, are known for their creativity, wit, and technical precision coupled with the informality of the street. By combining different forms of movement – such as jazz, ballet, boxing and inventions of her own making – Tharp’s work expands the boundaries of ballet and modern dance.
In 1992, Tharp published her autobiography “Push Comes to Shove.” She went on to write “The Creative Habit: Learn it and Use it for Life” (2003), followed by “The Collaborative Habit: Life Lessons for Working Together” (2009). She is currently working on a fourth book, “The Youth Habit,” about the importance of health, fitness and nutrition in a life devoted to the arts.
In addition to choreographing for her own company, Tharp has created dances for The Joffrey Ballet, American Ballet Theatre, The Paris Opera Ballet, The Royal Ballet, New York City Ballet, The Boston Ballet, The Australian Ballet, Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, The Martha Graham Dance Company, Miami City Ballet, Pacific Northwest Ballet, Atlanta Ballet and Royal Winnipeg Ballet. Today, ballet and dance companies around the world continue to perform Ms. Tharp’s works.
Tharp’s work first appeared on Broadway in 1980 with WHEN WE WERE VERY YOUNG, followed by her collaboration with musician David Byrne on THE CATHERINE WHEEL and later by SINGIN’ IN THE RAIN. In 2002, Tharp’s dance musical MOVIN’ OUT, set to the music and lyrics of Billy Joel. Tharp later worked with Bob Dylan’s music and lyrics in THE TIMES THEY ARE A-CHANGIN’ and COME FLY AWAY, set to songs sung by Frank Sinatra.
In film, Tharp has collaborated with director Milos Forman on HAIR, RAGTIME and AMADEUS. She has also worked with Taylor Hackford on WHITE NIGHTS and James Brooks on I’LL DO ANYTHING.
Her television credits include choreographing SUE’S LEG for the inaugural episode of PBS’ DANCE IN AMERICA IN 1976, co-producing and directing MAKING TELEVISION DANCE, and directing THE CATHERINE WHEEL for BBC Television. Tharp co-directed the television special BARYSHNIKOV BY THARP.
In 1992, Tharp published her autobiography PUSH COMES TO SHOVE. She went on to write THE CREATIVE HABIT: Learn it and Use it for Life, followed by THE COLLABORATIVE HABIT: Life Lessons for Working Together.
Pathways to Dance is an annual eight-county Capital Region initiative, in concert with Manhattan’s Joyce Theater, designed to support new dance creation and presentation.
This event is made possible by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature.
Funding support is also provided by the NYS DanceForce and the collaborating venues in the Pathways to Dance initiative.