Changing the Face of British Dance: Fifty Years of London Contemporary Dance School
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|When Robin Howard saw the Martha Graham Dance Company at their first London
appearance in 1954 he was 'bowled over as he had been by no other theatrical
experience'. For him it was the beginning of a passion and a vision that did indeed
change the face of British dance, although it held enormous sacrifices for him along
In 1966 The London School of Contemporary Dance, as it was originally called,
started modestly, in a one-studio premises down a cul-de-sac in London's West End.
It was the first in Europe to be authorised to teach the Graham technique, opening
new horizons in British dance, and it was the star performer and teacher from Martha
Graham's school and company, Robert Cohan, who presided over the fledgling School.
This account is the first to trace the journey of Howard's pioneering enterprise which
has had such far-reaching effects. In 1969 London Contemporary Dance School
moved to its new and much-expanded home, The Place, in Euston, and 2019 marks
50 years since its arrival. Howard's vision has produced an abundance of dancers,
choreographers, and teachers. It continues to inspire new generations of dancers and
students in the ever-changing world of contemporary dance, and this account hears
from those who have inspired and been inspired during those 50 turbulent, precarious,
pioneering and adventurous years.