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28 July 2009

Merce died…

UPDATED APRIL 22, 2011: As you can see from the comments at the end of this post, I attributed the quotes that originally accompanied these pictures to the wrong person. They were not from Merce, but from a colleague of his named Nancy Dalva. I’d recommend you read the full text of her piece “How to be a Guru.”

Whoops! The internet is confusing. Enjoy her piece, and enjoy the pictures in isolation.

***

I hope you will not consider it horn tooting to point out my earlier post about him, as brief as it was. I am so happy, now, that I saw him before he was found. And all I can say is at least he seemed to know what was coming. There’s a beauty in that, in preparation.

And, also, there’s a certain beauty in improvisation. So, in what I hope you’ll take as an experiment in what Merce himself might have called “chance procedures,” here are a series of images from the Black Lips concert I attended the day before he passed, along with quotes from the man himself. No explicit connection, but imply whatever you’d like.

Photos via BrooklynVegan.com by Bao Nguyen. Quotations via Bill Bragin‘s Twitter stream.

***

[Redacted at the request of Nancy Dalva.]

[Redacted at the request of Nancy Dalva.]

[Redacted at the request of Nancy Dalva.]

[Redacted at the request of Nancy Dalva.]


[Redacted at the request of Nancy Dalva.]

[Redacted at the request of Nancy Dalva.]

[Redacted at the request of Nancy Dalva.]

[Redacted at the request of Nancy Dalva.]

[Redacted at the request of Nancy Dalva.]

[Redacted at the request of Nancy Dalva.]

[Redacted at the request of Nancy Dalva.]

Posted by Alec Hanley Bemis

Tags: , , , , , ,

2 Comments

  1. On 2011-4-18 Nancy Dalva said:

    I am sure you mean well, butL These are NOT Merce Cunningham’s words. They are mine, from an essay I wrote about him, which is incidentally under copyright protection, first published in 2wice Magazine. It is called “How to Be A Guru, ” and also appears on my own web site. Please remove this no attribued material, as it is misleading. Merce did not say this. I said it ABOUT him, and my material cannot be used out of context because the publisher still holds the copyright. Please respond as I have, since I have seen this, to pursue it because of my own contractual obligations.

  2. On 2011-4-18 Nancy Dalva said:

    ps sorry about typos–I also read further about you–the context of the blog isn’t really informative,but your bio is and I am sure, given your own work in journalism, the problem(s) here will be apparent. I know the publisher will NOT give permission because the essay is still being used by her in another context. She isn’t thrilled it is on my web site, and I suppose I will have to take it down when her new publication appears. Incidentally, it was also printed in the program for Merce’s 90th birthday, without the original photo context (a shoot in Merce’s studio). BWT, vis a vis Bang on a Can, I’ve worked with both David and Julia, who can vouch that I am not a random crank. Speaking of attribution, where did the Black Mountain photo of Merce come from? It’s marvelous. Interesting too about the Duberman. I reviewed in Lincoln Kirstein for The New York Observer.
    Nancy Dalva
    producer/writer
    Mondays wthh Merce

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