Martha Graham Quotes

“Dance is the hidden language of the soul”
― Martha Graham

 

 

“There is a vitality, a life force, an energy, a quickening that is translated through you into action, and because there is only one of you in all time, this expression is unique. And if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium and will be lost.”
― Martha Graham

 

 

 

“There is a vitality, a life force, an energy, a quickening that is translated through you into action, and because there is only one of you in all of time, this expression is unique. And if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium and it will be lost. The world will not have it. It is not your business to determine how good it is nor how valuable nor how it compares with other expressions. It is your business to keep it yours clearly and directly, to keep the channel open. You do not even have to believe in yourself or your work. You have to keep yourself open and aware to the urges that motivate you. Keep the channel open. … No artist is pleased. [There is] no satisfaction whatever at any time. There is only a queer divine dissatisfaction, a blessed unrest that keeps us marching and makes us more alive than the others”
― Martha Graham

 

 

“Nobody cares if you can’t dance well. Just get up and dance. Great dancers are great because of their passion.”
― Martha Graham

 

 

“What people in the world think of you is really none of your business.”
― Martha Graham

 

 

“I believe that we learn by practice. Whether it means to learn to dance by practicing dancing or to learn to live by practicing living, the principles are the same. In each, it is the performance of a dedicated precise set of acts, physical or intellectual, from which comes shape of achievement, a sense of one’s being, a satisfaction of spirit. One becomes, in some area, an athlete of God. Practice means to perform, over and over again in the face of all obstacles, some act of vision, of faith, of desire. Practice is a means of inviting the perfection desired.”
― Martha Graham

 

 

“All that is important is this one moment in movement. Make the moment important, vital, and worth living. Do not let it slip away unnoticed and unused.”
― Martha Graham

 

 

“Great dancers are not great because of their technique, they are great because of their passion. ”
― Martha Graham

 

 

“People have asked me why I chose to be a dancer. I did not choose. I was chosen to be a dancer, and with that, you live all your life. ”
― Martha Graham

 

 

“The only sin is mediocrity.”
― Martha Graham

 

 

“There is only one of you in all time, this expression is unique. And if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium and it will be lost.”
― Martha Graham

 

 

“Some men have thousands of reasons why they cannot do what they want to,
when all they need is one reason why they can”
― Martha Graham

 

 

 

“The unique must be fulfilled.”
― Martha Graham

 

 

 

“No artist is pleased. There is no satisfaction whatever at any time. There is only a queer, divine dissastifaction; a blessed unrest that keeps us marching and makes us more alive than the others.”
― Martha Graham

 

 

“There is a vitality, a life force, a quickening that is translated through you into action, and there is only one of you in all time, this expression is unique, and if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium; and be lost. The world will not have it. It is not your business to determine how good it is, not how it compares with other expression. It is your business to keep it yours clearly and directly, to keep the channel open. You do not even have to believe in yourself or your work. You have to keep open and aware directly to the urges that motivate you. Keep the channel open. No artist is pleased. There is no satisfaction whatever at any time. There is only a queer, divine dissatisfaction, a blessed unrest that keeps us marching and makes us more alive than the others.”
― Martha Graham

 

 

 

“No artist is ahead of his time. He is the time. It is just that others are behind the time.”
― Martha Graham

 

 

 

“I feel that the essence of dance is the expression of man–the landscape of his soul. I hope that every dance I do reveals something of myself or some wonderful thing a human can be.”
― Martha Graham

 

 

“You are unique, and if that is not fulfilled, then something has been lost.”
― Martha Graham

 

 

“Dancers are the messengers of the gods.”
― Martha Graham

 

 

“There is a fatigue so great that the body cries, even in its sleep. There are times of complete frustration; there are daily small deaths.”
― Martha Graham

 

 

 

“Think of the magic of the foot, comparatively small, upon which your whole weight rests. It’s a miracle and the dance is a celebration of that miracle.”
― Martha Graham

 

 

 

“I am a dancer. I believe that we learn by practice. Whether it means to learn to dance by practicing dancing or to learn to live by practicing living…. In each it is the performance of a dedicated precise set of acts, physical or intellectual, from which comes shape of achievement, a sense of one’s being, a satisfaction of spirit. One becomes in some area an athlete of God.”
― Martha Graham

 

 

“Looking at the past is like lolling in a rocking chair. It is so relaxing and you can rock back and forth on the porch, and never go forward. ”
― Martha Graham

 

 

“Misery is a communicable disease. ”
― Martha Graham

 

 

“ Dancing is just discovery, discovery, discovery”
― Martha Graham

 

 

“Movement never lies. It is a barometer telling the state of the soul’s weather to all who can read it.”
― Martha Graham

 

 

“Dance is a song of the body. Either of joy or pain.”
― Martha Graham

 

 

“At the time I started in ballet they were dancing ‘The Spirit of Champagne’ on pointe, in Paris. I thought, ‘I don’t want to dance the spirit of champagne, I want to drink it!”
― Martha Graham

 

 

“It is not your business to determine how good it is, nor how valuable it is, nor how it compares with other expressions. It is your business to keep it yours clearly and directly, to keep the channel open.”
― Martha Graham

 

 

“You can be Eastern or Burmese or what have you, but the function of the body and the awareness of the body results in dance and you become a dancer, not just a human being. ”
― Martha Graham

 

 

“There is a vitality, a life force, an energy, a quickening that is translated through you into action, and because there is only one of you in all of time, this expression is unique. And if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium and it will be lost. The world will not have it. It is not your business to determine how good it is nor how valuable nor how it compares with other expressions. It is your business to keep it yours clearly and directly, to keep the channel open.”
― Martha Graham

 

 

“A dancer isn’t great because of their technique…they’re great because of their passion.”
― Martha Graham

 

 

“I have heard stories that it was love at first sight for both of us, that we disappeared to a guest room at Merle’s house, had our meals sent up, and didn’t emerge for several days. This is absolutely untrue. I would never behave like that as a guest in someone’s home. Carlos and I went to my beach house. ”
― Martha Graham

 

 

“We learn by practice. Whether it means to learn to dance by practicing dancing or to learn to live by practicing living, the principles are the same. One becomes in some area an athlete of God.”
― Martha Graham

 

 

“Don’t stand when you can sit; don’t sit when you can lie down.”
― Martha Graham

 

 

“There is a vitality, a life force, an energy, a quickening that is translated through you into action, and because there is only one of you in all of time, this expression is unique. And if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium and it will be lost. The world will not have it. It is not your business to determine how good it is nor how valuable nor how it compares with other expressions. It is your business to keep it yours clearly and directly, to keep the channel open. You do not even have to believe in yourself or your work. You have to keep yourself open and aware to the urges that motivate you. Keep the channel open. … No artist is pleased. [There is] no satisfaction whatever at any time. There is only a queer divine dissatisfaction, a blessed unrest that keeps us marching and makes us more alive than the others.”
― Martha Graham

 

 

“To me, the body says what words cannot. I believe that dance was the first art.”
― Martha Graham

 

 

“Nothing is more revealing than movement. The body says what words cannot.”
― Martha Graham

 

 

“It takes at least five years of rigorous training to be spontaneous.”
― Martha Graham

 

 

“The body never lies.”
Martha Graham”
― Martha Graham, Blood Memory

 

 

“No artist is ahead of his time. He is his time; it is just that others are behind the times.”
― Martha Graham

 

 

“I never set out to create a technique. I started out on the floor to find myself, to find what the body could do, and what would give me satisfaction – emotionally, dramatically and bodily. But I did not ever dream of establishing a technique. I still can’t believe anything like that happened.”
― Martha Graham

 

 

“Dancing is very like poetry.”
― Martha Graham

 

 

 

“There is a vitality, a life force, an energy, a quickening that is translated through you into action, and because there is only one of you in all of time, this expression is unique. And if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium and it will be lost. The world will not have it. It is not your business to determine how good it is nor how valuable nor how it compares with other expressions. It is your business to keep it yours clearly and directly, to keep the channel open. You do not even have to believe in yourself or your work. You have to keep yourself open and aware to the urges that motivate you. Keep the channel open. No artist is pleased. There is no satisfaction whatever at any time. There is only a queer divine dissatisfaction, a blessed unrest that keeps us marching and m akes us more alive than the others.”
― Martha Graham

 

 

 

“There is a vitality, a life force, an energy, a quickening that is translated through you into action, and because there is only one of you in all of time, this expression is unique. And if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium and it will be lost. The world will not have it. It is not your business to determine how good it is nor how valuable nor how it compares with other expressions. It is your business to keep it yours clearly and directly, to keep the channel open. You do not even have to believe in yourself or your work. You have to keep yourself open and aware to the urges that motivate you. Keep the channel open. …”
― Martha Graham

 

 

 

“No artist is pleased…. there is no satisfaction whatever at any time. There is only a queer, divine dissatisfaction; a blessed unrest that keeps us marching and makes us more alive than the others.”
― Martha Graham

 

 

“There is a vitality, a life force, a quickening that is translated through you into action and because there is only one of you in all time, this expression is unique. And if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium and will be lost. The world will not have it. It is not your business to determine how good it is nor how valuable it is nor how it compares with other expressions. It is your business to keep it yours clearly and directly, to keep the channel open.”
― Martha Graham

 

 

 

“There is a vitality, a life force, a quickening that is translated through you into action,
and because there is only one of you in all time, this expression is unique. 
And if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium and be lost. 
The world will not have it. 
It is not your business to determine how good it is, nor how valuable it is, nor how it compares with other expressions. 
It is your business to keep it yours clearly and directly, to keep the channel open. 
You do not even have to believe in yourself or your work. 
You have to keep open and aware directly to the urges that motivate you. 
Keep the channel open.”
― Martha Graham

 

 

“Or in the words of Martha Graham, in her book, Blood Memory,
“The body is a sacred garment. It’s your first and your last garment;
it’s what you enter life in and what you depart life with, and it should
be treated with honor, and with joy and with fear as well. But always,
though, with blessing.”
― – Martha Graham

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