Collection CHC5311 - Burdsall Family Papers

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Burdsall Family Papers


  • circa 1930s-1970s (Creation)


2 Boxes

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Biographical history

Lorna Burdsall was an American-born dancer, choreographer and professor of dance who spent the majority of her professional career in Cuba after marrying Cuban revolutionary and politician, Manuel Piñeiro. The couple moved to Cuba in 1955 and Burdsall began her collaboration with Cuban dance companies, including the Cuban National Ballet. She then co-founded the Dance Department of the Teatro Nacional de Cuba, which preceded the Danza Contemporánea de Cuba, which Burdsall collaborated with for more than 20 years. Burdsall is most known for founding the avante garde dance troupe, Así Somos (The Way We Are), which pioneered the modern dance movement in Cuba. In 2008, Burdsall was awareded the Cuban National Dance Prize for her contributions to the artform in Cuba. Lorna Burdsall died in Havana, Cuba in 2010.

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Scope and content

The Burdsall Family papers contains correspondence between members of the Burdsall family of Connecticut and, later, Lexington, Kentucky. Of note, the collection contains correspondence between American-born dancer Lorna Burdsall to family and friends in the United States while she was living and dancing in Cuba.

This collection is divided into two series. Series 1 contains letters to and from Lorna Burdsall while she was living and working in Cuba. Series 2 contains letters to and from various members of the Burdsall family as well as friends of the Burdsall family.

System of arrangement

This collection is arranged into two series. Series 1: Lorna Burdsall correspondence. Series 2: Burdsall family correspondence.

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This collection is open for research.

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Requests to publish or display materials from this collection require written permission from the rights owner. Please, contact for more information.

Languages of the material

  • English

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