She was born as Angela Duncan in San Francisco in 1877.
|Una performance di Isadora Duncan|
She began ballet lessons in early childhood, but was annoyed by traditional ballet style and developed her own style that she found more natural. In 1890 she was dancing at the San Francisco Barn Theatre, and from there went to Chicago and then New York. From the age of 16, she used the name Isadora.
Isadore Duncan's first public appearances in America made little impact on the public or critics, and so she left for England in 1899 with her family. There, she studied Greek sculpture at the British Museum to inspire her dance style and costume -- adopting the Greek tunic and dancing barefoot. She won over first private and then public audiences with her free movement and unusual costume (called "scanty," baring arms and legs).
She began to dance in other European countries, becoming quite popular.
Isadora Duncan's two children, born of liaisons with two different married lovers, drowned in 1913 along with their nurse in Paris when their car rolled into the Seine. In 1914 another son died soon after he was born. This was a tragedy that marked Isadora Duncan for the rest of her life, and after their death, she tended more towards tragic themes in her performances.
|La Duncan e Esenin|
Her later tours being less successful than those in her earlier career, Isadora Duncan lived in Nice in her later years. She died in 1927 of accidental strangulation when a long scarf she was wearing became caught in the rear wheel of the car she was riding in.