In Memoriam: Mary Cochran


NASD joins the dance community in mourning the recent passing of Mary Cochran.

Mary began her professional career in 1981 with Nikolais Dance Theatre. As a member of the Paul Taylor Dance Company from 1984-1996, Mary appeared in numerous pieces and originated roles in some of the company’s signature works, including “Company B.”  In 1995, she was the subject of a DanceMagazine cover story under the title “Paul Taylor’s Versatile Muse.” She served as the director of Taylor 2 from 1998-1999.

Prior to joining the faculty at Barnard College, Mary Cochran taught at institutions including Mills College, Harvard University, the University of Michigan, and University of North Carolina School of the Arts. During her time at Barnard from 2003-2013, she initiated as department chair organizational relationships that continue to this day, which enable students to connect to the professional world.

Mary’s service to NASD was notable. Mary served as a visiting evaluator, was a member of the Board of Directors from 2008-2010, and served as its Treasurer from 2010-2013.

Mary Cochran’s contributions to the work of NASD and the field of dance will live on through the lives and work of her students and colleagues. She touched so many throughout her distinguished career.

NASD and the National Office staff offers its deepest sympathy to Mary’s family, colleagues, and to the Barnard community.