The genesis of the Paul Taylor Dance Company occurred on May 30, 1954 in Manhattan, when dancemaker Paul Taylor first presented his choreography with five other dancers on the Lower East Side. That performance marked the beginning of 64 years of unrivaled creativity, and in the decades that followed, Mr. Taylor became a cultural icon and one of American history’s most celebrated artists, and was part of the pantheon that created American modern dance. Leading the Company that bears his
name until his death in 2018, Mr. Taylor molded it into one of the preeminent performing ensembles in
the world. Under the artistic direction of Taylor alumnus Michael Novak, the Company continues to
bring “America’s most communicative and wildly theatrical modern dance" to audiences and students
around the world, with a yearly residency at Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts.
The Company currently resides in the Lower East Side of Manhattan but sustains a global presence through its robust touring programs. Since its first European tour in 1960, the Company has performed in more than 500 cities in 66 countries, representing the United States at arts festivals in more than 40 countries and touring extensively under the aegis of the U.S. Department of State. Dedicated to sharing modern dance with the broadest possible audience, the Company tours annually, both domestically and internationally, with performances and a variety of educational programs and engagement offerings. Recent tours have brought the Company to Argentina, Brazil, Chile, China, Ecuador, Germany, Italy, Oman, Peru, Switzerland, Taiwan, and Turkey, as well as scores of cities within the United States.
The hallmark of the Company is its ever-expanding repertory. Over 170 dances exist within the
Foundation’s canon, 147 of which were choreographed by Mr. Taylor. The body of Mr. Taylor’ work is
titled the "Taylor Collection," and is home to dances that cover a breathtaking range of topics, and
moods. These dances speak to the natural world and our place within it; contemplate iconic
moments in American history; and reveal the spectrum of life’s beauties, complexities, and
society’s thorniest issues. While some of these dances are termed “dark” and other “light,” the majority are dualistic, mixing elements of both extremes.
In addition to the Collection, the Company also commissions dance works from established and emerging choreographers. In 2022, Lauren Lovette was appointed the Company's first Resident Choreographer, ushering in a new era and demonstrating the Company's deepened commitment to support dance creation in the 21st century.