Choreography / 1967


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.


Premiere Date

Jul 25, 1967

Premiere Venue

Ravinia Festival

Premiere Location

Chicago, IL


Toshi Ichiyanagi, Activities for Orchestra


Frank Stella


Frank Stella


Variable 20 - 28 minutes

Original Cast

Carolyn Brown

Merce Cunningham

Barbara Lloyd

Sandra Neels

Albert Reid

Yseult Riopelle

Valda Setterfield

Gus Solomons jr

Explore the Dance Capsule

Explore More

Other Choreography

Field Dances
Duration: Variable
Year: 1963
Collab.: Cage, Rauschenberg
Duration: Variable 15 - 40 minutes
Year: 1963
Collab.: Ichiyanagi, Rauschenberg
Open Session
Duration: Length unknown
Year: 1964
Duration: 23 minutes
Year: 1964
Collab.: Young, Rauschenberg
Duration: Length unknown
Year: 1964
Collab.: Cage, Rauschenberg
Museum Event No. 1 (Events)
Duration: Variable 60 - 90 minutes
Year: 1964
Collab.: Cage
Cross Currents
Duration: 7 minutes
Year: 1964
Collab.: Nancarrow, Rauschenberg
Variations V
Duration: 45 minutes
Year: 1965
Collab.: Cage, Paik, VanDerBeek