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Subject: Wendy Hilton, Specialist In Recreating Baroque Dance

dead at 71
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Date Posted: October 01, 2002 1:40:20 EDT

Wendy Hilton, a specialist in Baroque dance, died on Sept. 21 at her home in Manhattan. She was 71.

The cause was cancer, said Edward Manowitz, a friend.

Ms. Hilton, who was born in England, came to New York in 1969 to direct the Dance Collegium of Rosalyn Tureck's International Bach Society. In 1974 she joined the drama faculty at the Juilliard School, transferring the next year to the dance division.

Many of her most vivid and revealing reconstructions and choreographing of Baroque dance were created for Juilliard students. Among those dances were stagings of 18th-century pieces by Anthony L'Abbe, Louis Pecour and Raoul-Auger Feuillet. The dances were performed for the most part with a luminous purity, ease and respect that were surprising from young dancers training in the comparatively boisterous dance arts of the 20th century.

Ms. Hilton taught at schools abroad and in the United States, among them Stanford University. She worked as a dancer and a choreographer in early dance styles for BBC Television, the Handel Opera Society in London, the New York Pro-Musica Antiqua, the San Francisco Opera and the New York City Opera, where she created the dances for Thea Musgrave's "Mary, Queen of Scots" in 1981.

Ms. Hilton formed three early-dance groups, including the Wendy Hilton Baroque Dance Company in New York, created in 1984, which performed with symphony orchestras. She also worked with the Waverly Consort, the New York Conhsort of Viols and the Ensemble of Early Music.

Ms. Hilton wrote "Dances of Court and Theater" (Princeton Book Company, 1981), and with Donald Waxman wrote "Dance Pageant"(E. C. Schirmer, 1992), an anthology of Renaissance and Baroque keyboard music.

There are no immediate survivors.

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