Mary Grace Swift entered the Ursuline Order in 1947 and was educated at Creighton University and Notre Dame University, in history and Russian studies. Swift taught at Loyola University. Her first book, The Art of Dance in the U.S.S.R., was published in 1968. A Loftier Flight was awarded the first de la Torre Bueno Prize for the best unpublished book-length manuscript in the field of dance, in 1973.
“[A] delicate and careful study of one of the modern-dance pioneers that very clearly sets her work and her ideas within the context of her life. You will learn a lot of the background of contemporary modern dance through this.”—Clive Barnes, The New York Times., “It is good to have Hanya Holm rescued from the mysterious and invisible status of choreographer and brought into tangible focus both as a person and as a master and teacher of movement.” —John Martin., Known as one of the “big four” dance pioneers, Hanya Holm (born Johanna Eckert; 1893–1992) learned from, then worked with, Mary Wigman. Holm’s interest in patterns and spactial dimensions influenced future dancers including Alwin Nikolais., Walter Sorell (1905–1997) was a prolific and respected dance writer and artist. Read his New York Times obituary: http://www.nytimes.com/1997/02/24/arts/walter-sorell-91-who-wrote-about-dance-and-culture.html
“This fascinating document is the autobiography of a creative imagination rather than an individual. In dealing with her past, Wigman has chosen to eschew all dates, names, and places, and instead of personal anecdotes she describes the state of mind that accompanied the birth of certain specific dances…Those who have seen Wigman dance will find reminders of her performances in the lovely photographic illustrations. All who read the book will find in it some rare revelations of the artistic process.”—Joan Cass, Boston Herald., “It is a book to be warmly recommended to anyone interested in dance; a book that demands comparison with Doris Humphrey’s magnificent Art of Making Dances, as a personal document concerned with the raw material of dance.” Clive Barnes, The New York Times., “Miss Wigman writes with a passion and a richness of imagery which Walter Sorell’s translation captures very well…. The book is of the utmost importance to anyone concerned with dance history, and it also affords extraordinary insight into the operations of a remarkable creative mind.”—Jack Anderson, Dance magazine.