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Pam Tanowitz | Doris Duke Charitable Foundation Skip to main content

Doris Duke Artist Awards

Pam Tanowitz

Pam TanowitzPam Tanowitz, a 2020 Doris Duke Artist in the dance category, is a celebrated contemporary choreographer and collaborator known for her unflinchingly post-modern treatment of classical dance vocabulary. In 2000, she founded Pam Tanowitz Dance (PTD) to explore dance-making with a consistent community of dancers and has been manipulating and abstracting formal dance structures to draw upon the virtuosic skills of the PTD dancers ever since. Pam Tanowitz Dance was selected by The New York Times Best of Dance series in 2013, 2014, 2015, 2017, 2018 and 2019. Her 2018 creation of “Four Quartets,” inspired by T.S. Eliot’s literary masterpiece and set to music by Kaija Saariaho, was called “the greatest creation of dance theater so far this century” by The New York Times. They also referred to her 2017 dance, “New Work for Goldberg Variations,” created in collaboration with pianist Simone Dinnerstein, as a “rare achievement.” Tanowitz’s most recent work and first commission for the Royal Ballet, “Everyone Keeps Me,” was lauded by The Guardian, which noted that her “delicate, calm choreography” was filled with “inventiveness that constantly surprises.”

In January 2019, Tanowitz was named the first-ever choreographer in residence at the Richard B. Fisher Center for the Performing Arts at Bard College. She has additionally been recognized with many awards and prizes, including the Herb Alpert Award in the Arts, the Juried Bessie Award, an Outstanding Production Bessie Award, a Foundation for Contemporary Arts award, the Guggenheim Fellowship, the Hodder Fellowship from Princeton University, a City Center Choreography Fellowship and the Baryshnikov Arts Center Cage Cunningham Fellowship. She holds degrees from The Ohio State University and Sarah Lawrence College, and is currently a visiting guest artist at Rutgers University.

See the other 2020 Doris Duke Artists