Minneapolis, Minnesota

In 1962, Loyce Houlton founded a small dance school near the University of Minnesota that became the Minnesota Dance Theatre (MDT). Known for blending classical with contemporary dance, MDT engages the community and cultivates young dancers. For four decades, the company has performed the “Nutcracker Fantasy,” originally choreographed by Houlton and one of the most sought after holiday events in Minnesota.

“Houlton’s Legacy: The Magic of Dance” is a colorful survey and exhibit of MDT’s evolution. The exhibit features selections from the University of Minnesota Libraries’ Performing Arts Collection and includes personal notes and choreographic sketches from Houlton, photos of the company, original costumes, props, set designs, and continuous viewing of live performances from the past to the present.

An essay by arts journalist Camille LeFevre, “A life in Dance, Resurrected” details the horrifying and dramatic story of how MDT’s records were saved from destruction 20 years ago, and describes how they are displayed in the current exhibit.


Houlton’s Legacy: The Magic of Dance, thru Feb. 20, 1st floor gallery, Elmer L. Andersen Library, West Bank Campus, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis. 8:30am-4:15pm M-F; 9am-1pm Sa. Free.

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