The winners in the following categories were announced at the Isadora Duncan Dance Awards Ceremony on April 26, 2004.
The winners are listed in boldface type. The other finalists are also listed, in regular font.
LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT AWARD
cultural ambassador and visionary leader, Malonga welcomed artists from every continent, challenging all to engage in dialogue and build bridges for cultural exchange. He encouraged the elimination of barriers between continental Africans and African Americans. Malonga died on June 15, 2003. His last projects included Kusum Africa, a dance-theater performance showcasing the collaborative works of African director/choreographers; Malaki Matanga 2003: Congo of Yesterday & Today; and Wa Dia Fua Yiko Dio, a project exploring themes of cultural inheritance and exchange between urban/hip hop culture and traditional Congolese culture, to be completed in the Summer of 2005.
He also worked as an accompanist, improvising for dance classes. He later said that learning how to improvise helped him with composing. He started his stage career at the age of two and a half and stole the show as “Buster” in Daddy Long Legs. On the West Coast he appeared as a dancer and/or as an accompanist and composer for/with Bella Lewitsky, Marian Van Tuyl, Tina Flade, Carol Beals, Lenore Peters Job, Bernice van Gelder, Bodil Genkel, Louise Kloepper, Bonnie Bird, Lorie Kranzer, Tandy Beal, and Eva Soltes. In New York, he wrote music for Katherine Litz, Jean Erdman, Erick Hawkins, Merce Cunningham, Mark Morris, and Remy Charlip.
Lou Harrison was also a skilled painter, calligrapher, type designer, essayist, critic, poet, teacher, instrument builder, and political activist. He championed causes ranging through gay rights, pacifism, environmental and ecological, the use of Esperanto, and the sign language of deaf people. He taught a course entitled “Music of the World’s People” furthering the study of multi-cultural sources, which has changed what and how we hear today beyond Euro-centric music. In his early years he loved to go to the Chinese Opera. His piece for Michael Tilson Thomas’s debut with the San Francisco Symphony, A Parade for MTT, was influenced by Harrison’s love for San Francisco’s Chinese New Year’s Day Parade. He enlivened the range of musical instruments by his playful use of found objects. He learned Labanotation so he could help choreographers remember what they did from rehearsal to rehearsal. He said, “If you work with dancers, you must learn to dance.”