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And as you know, this piece was choreographed in 1937. Artists everywhere, but especially in the United States, responded artistically to the horrors of the Spanish Civil War. Martha was responding always to the world around her. Martha did many works from 1926 to 1930, including Lamentation. To me, Deep Song is really Lamentation unleashed. In Lamentation, Graham is housed in a fabric. It was Martha breaking the mold. It was Martha doing in dance what Picasso did in art. Martha was finding a way of speaking in the world as an artist and being very responsive as an artist to the world at large. Whether it had to do with literature, or with politics, or any of this, the creation was not the result of the fact that she was a political woman, or that she was a feminist. It had to do with Martha’s sensitivity to the world, her embracing of every aspect of humanity that brought her deeper and deeper into herself to emerge and to create, to bring this kind of theater, which did not exist, prior to Martha’s work, in this way. Deep Song came very early in that whole process, and when I say process, I mean that of the artists in that time period who were working in this way, responding, and building a certain kind of vocabulary, whether it was Picasso, or Martha. So comparing her, I know you’re doing a study of Lorca and Martha, and particularly of Deep Song, but it helps to understand also where she as an artist was coming from during that point. Let’s look at Lamentation. [We watch the Lamentation recording] Lamentation was in 1930 and it was breaking the mold. That was very pivotal. Think about Deep Song coming seven years later; I always think of Deep Song as the unleashing of the emotions that Lamentation contained. It’s just what Martha talked about; it’s a way of resisting the technical to find a kind of interior tension, bringing it really from the core of the body, because when you have a boundary like that, a costume which creates a boundary that’s quite physical, you can see tension itself, as it is made visible with the fabric. And

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Esferas—Issue Two  

Esferas is an undergraduate student and alumni initiative from New York University’s Department of Spanish and Portuguese. We are a peer-re...

Esferas—Issue Two  

Esferas is an undergraduate student and alumni initiative from New York University’s Department of Spanish and Portuguese. We are a peer-re...

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