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Collection Summary
Administrative Information
Publication Rigths:
Scope and Content
Container List
Ketch Dance Company
Vermont Council on the Arts
Cradle to Grave Arts
Burlington Schools
Trinity College
AIDS Education
Working Ground Dance Company
The Mill Project
Rose Street Bakery Project
Waterfront Project
Books/Notebooks/Video Tapes
The Loft
Miscellaneous Projects

Hannah Dennison Collection

Collection Summary

University of Vermont Libraries Special Collections Burlington, Vermont 05405-3596
Dennison, Hannah
Hannah Dennison Collection
Dates [inclusive]
8 boxes, 2 rolls
Shelf location
Library Research Annex.
The Hannah Dennison collection is comprised of a collection of works and projects completed by Hannah Dennison over the course of two decades.

Preferred Citation:

[Identification of item] Hannah Dennison Papers, Special Collections, University of Vermont Library.

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Administrative Information

Publication Information

University of Vermont, Bailey/Howe Library, Special Collections © 1998 


Collection is open for research.

Publication Rigths:

All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Curator of Manuscripts.

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Hannah Dennison was born in Framingham, Massachusetts, December 9, 1947 to James T. Dennison and Nancy Williams (Dennison). She has two older sisters, Sally and Becky and a younger brother, Andy. Her mother was a Christian Scientist and subsequently raised the children as such while her father remained an agnostic. Hannah left the formal religion in her early teens but retains some of its ideas today.

As a child Hannah was involved in sports, the outdoors and animals. She attended the Cambridge School of Weston from 1960 to 1966, with the exception in 1964 when she attended Sidwell Friends School in Washington, D.C., due to her Father's job change. Hannah briefly attended college at the University of Denver after which she lived on communes in California and Colorado. She moved to Boston in 1969 and lived in the macrobiotic community in Brookline.

She married Warren Durbin in September 1970 and gave birth to her son Zackary in January 1971. The family moved to South Woodstock, Vermont the following summer where they ran a Natural Food store until they moved to Burlington the fall of 1972. As soon as her son was able to attend day care, Hannah began working various odd jobs such as grounds keeper for Dorothy Westervelt and assistant administrator of Shelburne Farm Resources. She divorced her husband in 1975.

During the year 1977 Hannah began to dance. She took her first dance class with Monta Jones at UVM and received more training at the Main Street Dance Theatre with Nancy Watkin and Sara McMahon. By 1979 she was a teacher herself. After she left Main Street Dance Theatre she began devoting her energies to alternative studies of the moving body and the creation of dance/theatre pieces for stage and site specific pieces for a variety of settings inside and out. She has worked on several projects, all of which are documented in her collection.

Hannah has suggested that her materials may be useful to those who are collecting information about the industrial revolution and the mills in Winooski in particular, oral histories of former mill workers, how art can play a role in understanding history, teaching movement art in schools, researching the creative process and how work develops, art grant applications, and community art projects. For a fuller biography and her thoughts on the value of the collection, see Box 5, Folder 15.

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Scope and Content

The Hannah Dennison collection spans the years 1981-1998. It is comprised of a collection of works and projects completed by Hannah Dennison over the course of two decades. Her first project was in 1981 with the Ketch Dance Company and the final project represented in the collection was the 1998 Waterfront Project.

The collection fills seven cartons, one oversize pizza box and two tubes. The collection was organized in chronological order and given the titles of projects, books, notebooks, tapes, videotapes, posters/fliers and miscellaneous. Cartons 1-4 and 7 focus primarily on projects such as, Elder Dance from 1989-92, The Mill Project from 1993-98, and The Rose Street Bakery Project from 1995-97. Carton 5 contains books about the aforementioned projects and taped interviews. Carton 6 holds books, notebooks and videotapes of Hannah's projects. Carton 8, the oversize pizza box contains mostly posters and fliers from works such as the Mill Project and The Coal Field Walk/Dance and the 2 tubes hold posters and drawings from Hannah and others.

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