Cover image for Solitary song
Solitary song
Koner, Pauline.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Durham : Duke University Press, 1989.
Physical Description:
xi, 305 pages, 27 unnumbered pages of plates : illustrations ; 24 cm
General Note:
Includes index.
Personal Subject:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
GV1785.K596 A3 1989 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

On Order



In this well-illustrated work, Pauline Koner "traces the course" of her remarkable career from her days as a student of Michel Fokine in the 1920s, through further studies with Angel Cansino and the brilliantly influential Michio Ito, to a period as a dance soloist before World War II that make her reputation. After the war she entered a productive collaboration with Doris Humphrey, and then began the epochal performances with Jose Limon. She continued to perform until 1972, and her influence as a teacher and choreographer is still widely felt. Her book is an instructive and charming chronicle of this remarkable career, as well as a record of performances and interpretations that have gone far to mold modern dance into its present state of grace.

Reviews 1

Choice Review

In this fascinating dance autobiography, Koner not only sheds light on her own remarkable career, but chronicles virtually the whole history of modern dance in America since the 1930s. Koner worked with some of the best dancers of her time--Doris Humphrey, Jose Limon, Ruth Page, Michel Fokine, among others. Yet she created a style that was unique to her and made it an important element of the mainstream of modern dance. Her long career had many facets: she toured solo in the Soviet Union in the mid-30s, was a vital part of Jose Limon's dance troupe for many years, and worked as a teacher and choreographer. One has the feeling that these are the words of a truly committed artist because the financial rewards of Koner's years of dancing were meager. Her book is not only the facinating adventure of a life in dance, but an invaluable record of dance performances that live only in the memories of their creator and those lucky enough to have been in the audiences. Recommended for both dance historians and performers. Many good photographs of Koner performing. Both public and academic libraries. -J. L. Cohen, Los Angeles County Museum of Art