Isadora Dances

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A breathtakingly illustrated biography of the first modern dancer. When Isadora Duncan was a young child, her mother brought her for ballet lessons. Isadora thought standing on her toes was ugly. I dreamed of a different dance she said. Soon Isadora?s mother found her teaching half a dozen babies to wave their arms in the air. By the time of her death, Isadora had a following of personally trained students and was revered as a performer throughout the Western world. Caldecott Honor-winner Rachel Isadora?s ...
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Overview

A breathtakingly illustrated biography of the first modern dancer. When Isadora Duncan was a young child, her mother brought her for ballet lessons. Isadora thought standing on her toes was ugly. I dreamed of a different dance she said. Soon IsadoraÆs mother found her teaching half a dozen babies to wave their arms in the air. By the time of her death, Isadora had a following of personally trained students and was revered as a performer throughout the Western world. Caldecott Honor-winner Rachel IsadoraÆs expressive illustrations are the perfect complement for the life of an artist who was a true original, and her text makes accessible to young readers the work of a woman who forever changed the course of dance. A handsome introduction.ùBooklist for Young Mozart

A brief biography of the woman whose unique style of dance was not readily accepted by audiences at the turn of the twentieth century.

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Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal
Gr 2-4Isadora Duncan was famous both for an unconventional, even rebellious, life and for a highly innovative dance career. Her departures from a conventional lifestyle are only hinted at here, but the author offers a few examples of how her subject's young life influenced her approach to dance and contributed to her unwillingness to conform to the ideas of the world in which she lived (1877-1927). The picture-book format is unlikely to appeal to children old enough to appreciate and understand the subject. The realistic illustrations are mainly done in watercolor, with a few black-line drawings that show Duncan's flowing dance style. Some of the watercolors overuse light and shadow, giving the figures an unusual look. The final picture of Duncan is stiff, as is the one on the cover where she is unattractively shown squinting into the sun. The performer's life and contributions to modern dance deserve a fuller treatment for an older audience. Young children may be disturbed by the accounts of the accidental death of Duncan's two children and of her own tragic demise.Virginia Golodetz, Children's Literature New England, Burlington, VT
Kirkus Reviews
Objecting to standing on her toes as a child at dance lessons, and organizing a "school of dance" with paying pupils before she was ten, Isadora Duncan (18771927) will enchant readers even before they learn how she changed dance forever. Finding the strictures of ballet technique and pointe shoes ugly, Isadora invented her own style, hoping to "express the feelings and emotions of humanity." The author of Young Mozart (1997) describes not only the effects the "exotic dancer" had on her audiences—some responded with shock, others with adulation—but how some of her innovations became, over time, a part of dance convention. The flowing line and watercolor illustrations suit the subject well; Isadora and her troupe, the "Isadorables," swirl across the pages in their signature tunics, while a warm portrait of her with her children gains poignance next to text about their drowning. A succinct, compelling glimpse of a dancer and dreamer who substantially altered the prevailing restrictions of her time, simply by following her heart. (Picture book/biography. 4-8)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780670878932
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
  • Publication date: 3/1/1998
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 3 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.38 (w) x 10.30 (h) x 0.35 (d)

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 3, 2000

    Another Triumph for Isadora

    A wonderful book that captures the artistic spirit of Isadora Duncan and illustrates with exact representations the dance style of Isadora Duncan. A must read for any young girl dreaming of becoming a dancer!

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