Jon G’s review published on Letterboxd:
It is interesting to think how much work must have gone into this television production for what must have been a modest audience. Martha Graham is a legend of American dance, play the main part here in a ballet she commissioned and choreographed. (Fans of the music as a concert piece by Aaron Copland are always surprised to learn that his working title for this while he was writing it was simply "Ballet for Martha."
We hear the original version of the music here, in a small ensemble of 13 players (the original venue, at the Library of Congress, was not very big, another reason the cast of dancers is also modest.) Copland later wrote a version for full orchestra that became one of his most popular works. The versions usually heard today (known as Appalachian Spring Suite) are around 10 minutes shorter, so fans of the music can get a bit of a thrill hearing a whole new section watching this.
We get a version of her dance, which must face been quite similar to how she did it on stage, but we get a camera moving throughout the action to give us a close view.
This is truly a document of American dance and classical music history.