Margret Dietz was a twentieth century dancer and choreographer. Born in Berlin, Germany in 1913, the same year that the College of St. Benedict was founded, she joined the dance school of expressionist Mary Wigman in Dresden in 1932, and maintained a relationship with Wigman after earning her diploma in 1935. Dietz endured through Nazi suppression of modernist art and eventually came to the U.S., where she taught dance at several colleges and universities, including the University of Minnesota. In the early 1970s she was a choreographer and a popular teacher of summer dance workshops at CSB, where she was instrumental in the establishment of the Choreogram dance troupe. While in Saint Joseph in 1972, Dietz died suddenly from a heart attack; her devoted students were devastated. With the permission of the Sisters, she was buried in the Saint Benedict’s Monastery cemetery.
Forty years after her death, three of Dietz’s former students published a book, Margret Dietz: A Dancer’s Legacy, and donated all of the Dietz research materials, documents, correspondence, and personal effects in their possession, including some costumes designed, sewn, and worn by Margret, to create the Margret Dietz Collection in the CSB Archives. The College of Saint Benedict Archives now houses the "Margret Dietz Archives" which consists of Margret Dietz's complete scrapbook materials and career photographic collections. Many of the portraits are by famed European dance photographer Charlotte Rudolph from the 1930s in Germany. Costumes, memorabilia and other ephemera are also included in the collection.
How do I access the collection?
The Margaret Dietz Collection can be accessed in the CSB Archives by appointment. Contact us to learn more about using the collection.