MacArthur Fellows Program

Paul Taylor

Choreographer | Class of 1985

New York, New York
55 at time of award
August 29, 2018
Area of Focus
Choreography and Dance
Published July 1, 1985

About Paul's Work

Paul Taylor is a choreographer and the artistic director of the Paul Taylor Dance Company.

Though a commanding dancer himself, Taylor retired from performance in 1975 to dedicate himself fully to choreography.  Over the past fifty years, he has created more than one hundred and twenty new works for his company; and since the Royal Danish Ballet first performed Aureole in 1968, his works have entered the repertories of seventy-five ballet companies throughout the world.  Taylor has created seven dance telecasts for PBS, including Speaking in Tongues.  His dances, Company B, Funny Papers, and A Field of Grass, were performed in a 1996 PBS program entitled “The Wrecker’s Ball.”


His company has performed in more than four hundred and fifty cities, in over sixty countries.  He recently formed a second-generation company, Taylor 2, to carry on his performance tradition and to conduct outreach in schools along the Taylor style.  His autobiography, Private Domain (1987), is in its third printing and he is the subject of the documentary feature, Dancemaker (1999).

Taylor began his solo career in dance with the Martha Graham Dance Company (1955-62) and the New York City Ballet (1959), while at the same time presenting his own work in concerts in the U.S. and abroad.

Last updated January 1, 2005.

Select News Coverage of Paul Taylor
August 30, 2018
"Paul Taylor, a Giant of Modern Dance, Is Dead at 88"
The New York Times
Paul Taylor , 1985 MacArthur Fellow
March 6, 2015
"Paul Taylor, at 84, Has a New Mission With American Modern Dance"
The New York Times
Paul Taylor , 1985 MacArthur Fellow
March 2, 2015
"Paul Taylor's Legacy Plan Champions Modern Dance"
The Huffington Post
Paul Taylor , 1985 MacArthur Fellow
March 2, 2012
"Paul Taylor Dance Company | Paul Talor with Nancy Dalva"
The Brooklyn Rail
Paul Taylor , 1985 MacArthur Fellow
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