Choreography / 1967

Scramble

This was a dance for the then company of eight dancers, later augmented to eleven. It consisted of eighteen sections whose order could be changed, or omitted, hence the difference in length. Cunningham performed a clownlike solo (this aspect tended to be left out when other dancers performed it) and a duet with Carolyn Brown, who also had a solo with slow, swimming movements. The music by Toshi Ichiyanagi (Activities for Orchestra) is scored for western instruments; the players perform multiple activities in cued sequences that are scrambled by the musicians in performance. Scramble was the first piece whose designer was selected by Jasper Johns after his appointment as artistic advisor. Frank Stella made a set consisting of strips of canvas in the colors of the spectrum, mounted on vertical frames that could be moved about the stage by the dancers. He specified the colors of the costumes: the men wore jumpsuits, the women leotards and tights.

Details

Premiere Date

Jul 24, 1967

Premiere Venue

Ravinia Festival

Premiere Location

Chicago, IL

Music

Toshi Ichiyanagi, Activities for Orchestra

Set

Frank Stella

Costumes

Frank Stella

Duration

20 - 28 minutes

Original Cast

Carolyn Brown

Merce Cunningham

Barbara Lloyd

Sandra Neels

Albert Reid

Yseult Riopelle

Valda Setterfield

Gus Solomons jr

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