History Quiz: Louis Horst

1. Who was Louis Horst’s only rival when it came to teaching dance composition?


2. How much experience with dance did Horst have before being offered a two-week engagement as musical director for the Denishawn Dance Company?


3. Louis is most closely associated with which modern dancer?

    A. Doris Humphrey

    B. Hanya Holm

    C. Martha Graham

    D. Pina Bausch


4. What important dance magazine did Louis Horst create and edit?

    A. Dance Magazine
    B. Dance Observer

    C. Modern Dance

    D. Dance Teacher


5. Martha Hill hired Horst for what two influential teaching jobs?


6. Horst was a central figure on the teaching staff at the American Dance Festival at Connecticut College. What nickname did students give him?


7. True or False: Horst influenced modern dance’s first generation of major players as well as the up-and-comers who followed, including Merce Cunningham, Paul Taylor and Trisha Brown.


8. What famous dancer/choreographer (and former student of Horst’s) credited him as her greatest encourager?


9. True or False: Today, nearly 50 years after Horst’s death, his ideals are still viewed by everyone as the standard teaching principles for dance composition.


10. Horst gave modern dance a _____ _____.




1. Doris Humphrey; 2. Absolutely none; 3. C. Martha Graham; 4. B. Dance Observer; 5. To teach at The Bennington School of the Dance and to teach dance composition at Juilliard; 6. The Festival’s “resident ogre;” 7. True; 8. Anna Sokolow; 9. False. His ideals are often dismissed as old-fashioned and restrictive.; 10. Disciplined structure

Read the full article on Louis Horst, here.

Additional Resources


Anna Sokolow: The Rebellious Spirit,
by Larry Warren, Dance Horizons, 1991

Bird’s Eye View: Dancing with Martha Graham and on Broadway,
by Dorothy Bird, University of Pittsburgh Press, 1997

Deep Song: The Dance Story of Martha Graham,
by Ernestine Stodelle, Schirmer Books, 1984

Louis Horst: Musician and a Dancer’s World,
by Janet Mansfield Soares, Duke University Press, 1992

Martha Hill and the Making of American Dance,
by Janet Mansfield Soares, Wesleyan University Press, 2009

May O’Donnell: Modern Dance Pioneer,
by Marian Horosko, University Press of Florida, 2005

Modern Dance Forms in Relation to the Other Modern Arts,
by Louis Horst and Carroll Russell, Dance Horizons, 1987

Pre-Classic Dance Forms,
by Louis Horst, Dance Horizons, 1968

The American Dance Festival,
by Jack Anderson, Duke University Press, 1987

Who’s Not Afraid of Martha Graham?
by Gerald E. Myers, American Dance Festival, 2008

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