Insta-Graham Choreography Challenge!

Watch the video of Martha dancing eight very short moves! Note that each move represents something in the natural world: Sun, Earth, Wind, Water, Fire, Moon, Stars, and Night.

Our Choreography Challenge asks you to create your own Dance for the Planet using AT LEAST 3 of Martha’s Moves.

Then just film yourself dancing it somewhere in nature and post your dance to Instagram with hashtags: #marthamoves and #marthagraham

We’ll repost many of our favorite entries on our @marthagrahamdance account and the top five finalists will receive a gift bag full of Graham swag.


Have fun!

Create a dance under 1 minute in length, using AT LEAST 3 of the 8 Martha moves.

Be imaginative. Surprise us! A panel of Graham experts will make selections based on creativity and originality. Just remember — we must be able to identify at least 3 of Martha’s moves somewhere in your dance.

Choose your own rights-free soundtrack. Music, silence, or sounds of nature.  It must be rights-free.

Film your #MarthaMoves dance in your favorite natural setting.

Post on Instagram. Use the hashtags #marthamoves and #marthagraham, and tag your favorite organization that does good work for the Planet. (You must use the hashtags so that the judges can find your submission.)

Submit anytime between now and the autumnal equinox, September 22, 2022 at midnight Eastern Time.

Some historical background…

This contest is inspired by a dance Martha Graham created in 1952 titled Canticle for Innocent Comedians. The dance celebrated nature through eight vignettes — solos and duets created for the stars of her Company titled Sun, Earth, Wind, Water, Fire, Moon, Stars and Night. These were connected with choreography for a chorus of dancers.

Martha’s original dance was never filmed so the choreography has been forgotten over the years. Today’s Graham Company is using Martha’s title and format to inspire an entirely new dance — with each vignette created by a different choreographer. And this contest invites YOU to interact with Martha’s original ideas and create a Canticle of your own!

Here are a few archival photos of Martha’s original dance…