This collection comprises dance programs and some ephemera documenting Isadora Duncan and her international performances from
1900 to 1920. Materials in this collection are in Dutch, English, French, and German. Also included are programs for performances
by her students, the Isadora Duncan Dancers.
Isadora Duncan was born in San Francisco on May 27, 1878. She was a pioneer of "free dance" -- the theory that dance was the
expression of an inner urge or impulse and reflected the rhythms of nature -- as opposed to the formal dance form of ballet.
Her revolutionary ideas on dance were not well accepted in America, and Duncan left for Europe in 1899, where she enjoyed
greater success. Her first appearances were from 1900 to 1902 in Paris, Budapest, Vienna, Munich, and Berlin. In 1904 she
founded her own school. In 1905 Duncan appeared in Russia for the first time, where she was much admired by advocates of reform
of the ballet. In 1925 Duncan moved to France, where she began her autobiography, My Life, and gave occasional performances.
She gave her last recital in Paris in July 1927. In Nice, France, on September 14, 1927, Duncan was killed in a car accident.
Lessons in the Duncan dance technique continued after her death, and were taught by Irma Duncan (one of Isadora's adopted
daughters) and several of her other pupils, who were also known as the Isadora Duncan Dancers.
Property rights reside with the University of California. Literary rights are retained by the creators of the records and
their heirs. For permissions to reproduce or to publish, please contact the Head of Special Collections and University Archives.