Mark Morris

  • Born

    August 29, 1956 Mark Morris was born in Seattle, Washington.
  • Jose Greco Flamenco Inspiration

    Jose Greco Flamenco Inspiration
    When Mark Morris was eight years old he attended a performance by the Jose Greco Flamenco Company. This performance sparked Morris' interest in dance so he began taking spanish dance classes at the age of eleven.
  • Koleda Folk Ensemble

    Koleda Folk Ensemble
    At the age of 13, Mark Morris joined the Koleda Folk ensemble where he began to choreograph professionally only after being there for one year.
  • New York City adventures

    New York City adventures
    After studying in Spain for about two years, Morris moved to New York City. In NYC he danced for various companies with the choreographers being Eliot Feld, Lar Lubovitch, Laura Dean, and Hannah Kahn.
  • Mark Morris Dance Group

    Mark Morris Dance Group
    The Mark Morris dance group was created in 1980 and started with only ten dancers. He selected his dancers very carefully, choosing individuals of every color and physical description. He cast without regard to race, rank, or sex.
  • New Wave Festival

    New Wave Festival
    At Brooklyn Academy's 1984 New Wave Festival, the ten dancers from the Mark Morris Dance Group performed some of Morris' works. This performance solidified Mark Morris' reputation.
  • Ballet Choreographer

    Ballet Choreographer
    Although Mark Morris trained primarily as a spanish dancer he excelled in ballet as well. He had created over nineteen ballets since 1986. Morris also choreographed for the San Francisco Ballet, the Paris Opera Ballet and the American Ballet Theatre.
  • Director of Dance

    Director of Dance
    From 1988-1991, Morris became the director of dance at Theatre Royal de la Monnaie in Brussels. This was the national opera house in Belgium.
  • Dido and Aeneus

    Dido and Aeneus
    Dido of Aeneus of 1989 was a dance version of the opera. Mark Morris played Dido and the Sorceress. Morris mixed subtlety and humor. The movements and gestures are drawn from modern and Indian dance, European folk dance, and sign language for the deaf. The diversity of Mark Morris was nearly legendary.
  • White Oak Dance Project

    White Oak Dance Project
    In 1990, Morris and Mikhail Baryshnikov started up the White Oak Dance Project. This special touring company consisted of dancers from leading ballet and modern dance companies performing many works by Morris.
  • MacArther Foundation

    MacArther Foundation
    In 1991, Morris was named a Fellow of the MacArthur Foundation. Along with this he recieved eleven honorary doctorates.
  • The Hard Nut

    The Hard Nut
    The Hard Nut is Mark Morris' version of The Nutcracker. He choreographed this piece when He returned to the states from Brussels. At this time he was choreographing five to six pieces a year.
  • Teaching his talent

    Morris began teaching at the University of Washington, Princeton and Tanglewood Music Center.
  • Falling Down the Stairs

    Falling Down the Stairs
    Morris collaborated with cellist Yo-Yo Ma on a television project titled Falling Down Stairs. The dance is set to Bach’s Third Suite for unaccompanied cello, and the program won an Emmy Award for “Outstanding Classical Dance-Music Program.”
  • Mark Morris Dance Center School

    Mark Morris Dance Center School
    Mark Morris opened up his dance company to providing dance classes. He created rehearsal space for the dance community, outreach programs for local children and persons with Parkinson's disease, and dance classes to any age.
  • Awards

    Some more awards Mark Morris has recieved are the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs Mayor's Award for Arts & Culture (2006), WQXR Gramophone Special Recognition Award (2006), Samuel H. Scripps/American Dance Festival Award for Lifetime Achievement (2007), the Leonard Bernstein Lifetime Achievement Award for the Elevation of Music in Society (2010), and the Benjamin Franklin Laureate Prize for Creativity (2012).
  • Festival Dance

    Festival Dance
    Morris premiered the 150th work of his professional career, Festival Dance, at his dance center in Brooklyn, NY. This was a sold out event.
  • Ojai Music Festival

    Ojai Music Festival
    Mark Morris served as the Music Director.