Barnes lists numerous women who led the field in modern dance in the 20th century. Then he lists all the innovative and influential women who were leaders in 20th century ballet: Rambert, de Valois, Littlefield, Chase, Franca, van Praag, etc. etc.
I got a press release from Barnard College announcing an initiative to assist women dancemakers, with the clear implication that they were an endangered species. I could scarcely believe it. Why was such a thing necessary? Surely here was a gender battle that was long over, if it had ever even started. So what on earth were Barnard College and its estimable dance dpeartment complaining about? And then I thought a little more.
But, as Barnes says,
Barnes has his own theories. But what do YOU think? Are women leaders -- in the ballet world, at least -- an endangered species as we enter the 21st century?
That was the 20th century. Fast forward to the 21st. ... OK, Monica Mason and Brigitte Lefevre are doing fine. But had not two other women directors of classical companies, Maina Gielgud, late of both the Australian Ballet and the Royal Danish Ballet, and Anna-Marie Holmes, late of the Boston Ballet, encourtered unusual difficulty with heavily male-oriented directorates .. [And] how many women choreographers in modern dance have really hit the international big time over the past half century? Twyla Tharp, Pina Bausch, Trisha Brown certainly, perhaps Sasha Waltz, and Anne Teresa de Keersmaeker; the list is neither enormous nor even indisputable."