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Isadora: A Sensational Life (Anglais) Relié – novembre 2001

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--Ce texte fait référence à l'édition Broché.
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Set against the sweeping backdrop of Europe and the United States in the early 20th century, this is the story of Isadora Duncan--the most compelling account of her magnificent life yet. --Ce texte fait référence à l'édition Broché .

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Commentaires client les plus utiles sur (beta) HASH(0x98be9138) étoiles sur 5 8 commentaires
15 internautes sur 18 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x9a8c7114) étoiles sur 5 She Was Large...She Contained Multitudes 2 janvier 2002
Par Robert Morris - Publié sur
Format: Relié
Here is an excellent biography of someone whose life combined artistic achievement with personal dysfunction. Arguably the creator of what we now refer to as "modern dance," Isadora Duncan certainly filled her "sensational" personal life with a series of adventures and misadventures while struggling to sustain a career during which so many of her knowledgeable contemporaries praised her artistic talents and achievements. Consider these comments:
"I got an impression of enormous grace, and enormous power in her dancing -- she was very serious, and held the audience and held them completely." (Frederick Ashton)
"She moved with those wonderful steps of hers with simplicity and detachment that could only come through the intuition of genius itself." (Tamara Karsavina)
"She incarnated music in her dance." (Serge Kousevitsky)
"The soul becomes drunk with this endless succession of beautiful lines and groupings [of movement]." (Ernest Newman)
"The greatest woman I have ever known....Sometimes I think she is the greatest woman the world has ever known." (Rodin)
Impressive accolades indeed which, for me, increase the poignancy (at times the tragedy) of her poor judgment and irresponsible behavior when not performing before an always adoring audience. Even for those who know little (if anything) about dance, Kurth has written an absorbing, at times compelling biography of a woman who (in the words of a contemporary, Janet Flanner) embodied "the grandeur of permanent ideals...[but was] too expansive for personal salvation."
By the time I approached the final chapter of Kurth's biography, I had observed a number of similarities between Isadora's life and the lives of Edna St. Vincent Millay and Sylvia Plath. For example, their original and substantial talent, their excessive self-indulgences, their passion for experiencing (both physically and emotionally) as much as possible each day, and their vulnerabilities which so many others exploited shamelessly. With Whitman in mind, Robert Gottlieb observes: "For Isadora there were no rules, there was only the Song of Herself; she lacked the discipline, the emotional and moral resources, to keep liberty from lapsing into license." Such is often the fate of a genius which, by most accounts, Isadora Duncan was. "Sensational" indeed.
4 internautes sur 4 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x985e86cc) étoiles sur 5 "She looked pink, talked red, and acted scarlet!" 17 février 2012
Par adorian - Publié sur
Format: Broché
This is an excellent biography of one of Art's greatest figures. It is a long, thorough, detailed look at every aspect of Isadora's amazing life and career. She lived life to the hilt. She spent more money than she could earn. She loved sex and champagne. She didn't care whom she shocked. She lived, danced, and loved by her own rules. Expose your breasts in Boston?--why not? Advocate Communism in the U.S. hinterlands?--of course!

From her early scandals to her incredibly grotesque death (much worse than portrayed in the Vanessa Redgrave movie), Isadora moved in an elite heightened world, drinking and carousing with the other great names of the European modernist movements. This book lets us view a lot of those encounters. Epigrams fly like lightning bolts. Insults are flung like spears. We get 558 pages of main text, heavily documented. Letters are quoted. Other writers are cited.

The book is well-written. (I object to "vocal chords" on p. 29) If you want to bathe in the hothouse world of famous influential artists who changed our world, you should read this great biography, which not only gives you a total picture of Isadora's life and impact on dance, but also lets us enjoy the many other famous artists whose orbits often crossed hers. There are lots of good pictures, which give you an idea of how people were mesmerized by her posings, posturings, and gestures. I can recommend this wonderful book without any hesitation.
8 internautes sur 10 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x9a8c7c78) étoiles sur 5 Should have won a Pulitzer Prize 11 novembre 2007
Par Martijn13Maart1970 - Publié sur
Format: Relié
I have read many biographies, from Saint-Exupérie to Rockefeller, and thanks to the feedback system of Amazon and the editioral reviews, it is quite possible to filter out the good ones from the mediocre.
Needless to say this biography stands out from many others and I think it is one of my favourites I have read so far. I said in the title that it should have won the Pulitzer price, although I do not know whether biographies are eligible for this. But it shows why Peter Kurth, the author, needed 10 years to complete it.

What can my review add on the information available?
First of all, read the editiorials, they give good information on what this book, and what Isadora is about. Usually only the positive reviews are kept, but in this case, for a reason. This biography is indeed written as all biographies should be written; well researched, not confusing, as detailed as possible without getting boring, and intertwined with the times that in this case Isadora lived, and finally neutral in style yet intriguing.
Peter Kurth does all these things. Even the title does her life justice, for after reading this book, one can only conclude her life, as well as her death, truly was sensational. Especially for a woman in those days to achieve and do what she did is amazing. Even now, a Madonna would not make the grade in comparison to Isadora.
Isadora virtually created the 'natural' modern dance as opposed to the Russian ballet, which she considered merely as stiff and hysterical hopping that proved flying indeed was impossible for human beings. As some said, it was as if she gave something back to the people, something natural that was lost and found again.
She was probably as influential as Martha Graham was later in the century, but totally opposite style. Some said you should have seen her dance to die happily. We will never know, since apart from all the crowds she drew which no longer are with us, she was never caught on film. Maybe better that way, since it only adds more to the cachet of legend she has and had.
It is just wonderful to read a story on how some humans do it; rise from nothing to stardom, 'just' with hard work, perseverance, good ideas, and genius. Her life was a constant struggle to renew her art and to sell her idea to the world that often was not ready for it. Of course like all of us she needed love, and she knew how to get it. But just like Callas' tragedy, or Dalida's dictum `my life was a success, but what was it, really?', it also casts yet another light on that mystery called fame, and the Faustian bargain that somehow always comes with it. When Isadora met her mother years later, she asked herself; `We had set off to look for fame and fortune. Both had been found, so why the result was so tragic?'
The reason for this was that her life was not only full of the glamour of travel, intrigue, and meeting everyone from Steichen to Fairbanks to Valentino to Chaplin, but also because it was full of tragedy.
She never really found the right lover, or husband in her life. She never could keep a secure fortune, and like so many artists, she could not really cope with aging.
But perhaps her life is also a glorious proof of how wonderful life is, no matter the tragedy, and how she somehow was always driven to go on with her art and her glamorous lifestyle, despite even having lost all of her three children. In short; what a life, and apart from the tragedy, what fun she must have had! Her equally legendary death only adds to the thrill of this all!
1 internautes sur 1 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
HASH(0x985e98a0) étoiles sur 5 The sensational life of Isadora Duncan told with perfect clarity, as you admire one of the greatest dancers of her time. 27 octobre 2012
Par Lucinda - Publié sur
Format: Relié
Isadora was as beautiful dancing as she was a person, being one of the most remarkable individuals and talented dancers of her time, perhaps of all time. She was the matriarch and patron saint of creative self expression, by inventing her own physical language to express the spirit that touched the soul with simple but beautiful movement. She was a pioneer in the dance world, being in possession of a name that is synonymous with originality and distinctiveness, a beholder of spontaneity and intrigue. Her tragic death in nineteen twenty seven came as a shock, as she was strangled by her own scarf during a joyride on the French Riviera; that some say was a dramatically fitting end to a remarkable life. This is an incredible biography of a magnificent, generous and gallant woman who was also sadly fated with a life that was full of tragedy (such as with the drowning of her two children). She was plagued by alcoholism and frowned upon at times with scorn, as she did not always act as she should, especially in one particular instance during an American tour in Boston where she expressed no reserve. This account of a most astounding woman and dancer is very detailed and which uncovers the mystery behind the passionate artist, giving the most accurate account of her life.

Complete with stunning photographs, complimented with a beautiful cover, this is a book to treasure. She brought ancient Greek dancing to life with her energy, skill and expressive dancing that was so full of energy and emotions, making one feel as if they were watching something of myth or legend right in front of their very eyes. It also delves into her personal life, loves and the Duncan school in Grunewald that was such a significant part of her life as she traveled between Greece and Berlin. When she then journeyed to America her story really comes alive, in those moments on stage that will always be remembered. Her constant exploring from France to Vienna and England kept a restless soul at peace, as she continued to raise a family and support her husband whilst retaining that deep seated love for dance. Her second school in Bellevue was a turning point in her career, as she takes on the role of a mothering teacher who guides the next generation forwards with love and the knowledge of her craft. Performances such as La Marseillaise spring to mind, as you think of this iconic figure within dance history, who was a pioneer that established the first foundation blocks.

Just exceptionally brilliant and unforgettable this fantastic biography is one that all dance lovers (both Greek, classical ballet and modern dance) lovers will cherish.
HASH(0x985e9a50) étoiles sur 5 Get Read Great Information 30 août 2010
Par Atlanta Dancer - Publié sur
Format: Relié Achat vérifié
This is a great book that you cannot put down. The author does an amazing job telling the story of Isadora's life and giving the picture of the importance of her work in its historical context. I learned so much about her life, her work and importance of it related to what we see as modern dance and theater.
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