Alabama Dance Council

Robert Swinston


Dance is the hidden language of the soul - Martha Graham

Ballet Students

Robert Swinston, Director of Choreography, was born in Pittsburgh, PA, and attended Middlebury College and The Juilliard School, where he received a BFA in Dance. He danced with the Martha Graham Apprentice Company, the José Limón Dance Company, and with Kazuko Hirabayashi Dance Theatre. He joined MCDC in August 1980 and became Assistant to the Choreographer in July 1992. Since Merce Cunningham's death in July 2009, Swinston has been the Director of Choreography, overseeing the Merce Cunningham Dance Company, the CDF Repertory Understudy Group and its work with the Cunningham Educational Outreach Program. Since 1998, Swinston has assisted in various Cunningham archival reconstructions including Suite for Five (1956–58); Summerspace (1958); How to Pass, Kick, Fall and Run (1965); RainForest (1968); CRWDSPCR (1993); Ocean (1994); and the recent revivals of Squaregame (1976), Duets (1980), and Roaratorio (1983) for the Legacy Tour. He has assisted in the staging of Cunningham works on other companies, including Boston Ballet, White Oak Dance Project, Rambert Dance Company, and New York City Ballet. In 2003, Swinston received a “Bessie” Award for his performance in the revival of Cunningham’s How to Pass, Kick, Fall, and Run. In 2009, Swinston was named a Trustee for the Merce Cunningham Trust.


2011 Festival Classes

Merce Cunningham Dance Technique: Purple & Red

2011 Faculty