Beyond Isadora: Bay Area Dancing The Early Years, 1915-1965 documents the fascinating and little-known history of early 20th century dance in the San Francisco Bay Area.

It is a history of performers, choreographers and teachers, pioneers of today's dance community. It is also women's history, since the prime movers were almost all women. This history, offered here as short biographical and chronological sketches, seeks to detail the regional development of ballet and of modern, ethnic and folk dance, from the era of Isadora Duncan, San Francisco's dance legend, who is regarded as the pioneer revolutionary and the mother of modern dance, to the mid 1960s.

After Isadora, decades of dancers, dance groups and organizations carried on and refined a new American dance. A symposium with Bay Area dance leaders and a performance of 'reconstructed works' was held in 2002 to provide groundwork information. Rare public and private archival collections supplied program data and illustrative visual material.

Some noted dancers here include Isadora Duncan, Loie Fuller, Ruth St. Denis and Ted Shawn, the Boyntons and Quitzows of Berkeley, Anita Peters Wright and the California Dancing Girls, Peters Wright Creative Dance, the San Francisco Dance Council and League, the Oakland Dance Association, the San Francisco Ballet, the Oakland Ballet, the Halprin-Lathrop Company, the Shawl-Anderson Dance Center and others as important but less well-known. There is a section on dance in schools and colleges and tributes to leaders of ethnic and folk dance.

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After many years of dance training in NY with the Duncan Dance Guild, the New Dance Group, Graham, Limon and Cunningham, Joanna G. Harris came to the Bay Area to study at Mills College with Marian Van Tuyl and Eleanor Lauer.

As a graduate student she worked on IMPULSE, the annual magazine of dance, and upon graduation taught at UC Berkeley where she choreographed and performed for the Department of Drama and Music, 1959-69.

Joanna formed her own company, the Monday Night Group, toured California, and founded the Dance/Drama Department at UC Santa Cruz and the Creative Arts Therapy program at Lone Mountain College. She is on the faculty of OLLI Institute, Berkeley and an instructor at the Modern Dance Center, Berkeley. She also writes reviews and essays about dance for websites and print publications.