Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater Announces Highlights to Lincoln Center Season June 12-16
Artistic Director Robert Battle has announced exciting highlights to Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater's Lincoln Center season at the David H. Koch Theater June 12 - 16. In addition to a world premiere by Darrell Grand Moultrie and recent premieres by some of today's most revered choreographers across three distinct programs - Bold Visions, Trailblazers, and Timeless Ailey - the engagement includes The Ailey Spirit Gala benefit celebrating the 50th Anniversary of The Ailey School; An Evening Honoring Carmen de Lavallade; and a series of special activities for people of all ages and backgrounds. The engagement also marks the debut of five new Company dancers.
The 2019 Lincoln Center engagement opens on Wednesday, June 12 at 7:30pm with the Bold Visions program, featuring works by Darrell Grand Moultrie, Ronald K. Brown, and Jawole Willa Jo Zollar. Moultrie's world premiere and debut for the Company uses 12 dancers and an original score to reflect on the legacies that we're all a part of and the universal journey that each person takes to find - and share - their passion. The evening also welcomes 2018 Dance Magazine Award winner Ronald K. Brown's most recent premiere for the Company, The Call, which seamlessly blends modern and West African dance idioms in "a love letter to Mr. Ailey." Jawole Willa Jo Zollar's Shelter, a gripping portrait of homelessness featuring powerful spoken word highlighting how our shelter can be threatened by climate change, will also take the stage. Bold Visions repeats Sat, 6/15 at 2pm (Family Matinee w/dancer Q&A).
On Thursday, June 13 at 7pm The Ailey Spirit Gala benefit celebrates the 50th Anniversary of The Ailey School, the official school of Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater and a springboard for many notable artists - including more than 70% of the Company's dancers. This one-night-only program brings together former AileyCampers, talented students from The Ailey School, rising stars of Ailey II, and the incomparable members of Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater in a ballet choreographed by Ailey II Artistic Director Troy Powell. The story follows a young boy from Ailey's Arts In Education programs through The Ailey School and Ailey II, all the way to the Ailey company, which parallels the inspiring journeys of Powell and Ailey dancer Solomon Dumas. Following an uplifting Revelations finale, a festive soirée takes place on the Lincoln Center promenade with dancing to the musical stylings of DJ M.O.S. The evening honors the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation and proceeds from the benefit provide vitally needed scholarships for talented students of The Ailey School, and support Ailey's innovative Arts In Education & Community Programs. For tickets and information, visit alvinailey.org/support/ailey-spirit-gala or call 212-405-9624.
This season also welcomes the return of hip-hop innovator Rennie Harris' acclaimed world premiere Lazarus, Ailey's first two-act ballet, in the Trailblazers program opening on Friday, June 14 at 8pm. Inspired by the life and legacy of the Alvin Ailey, this powerful ensemble work features a soundtrack that melds Nina Simone, Terrence Trent D'Arby, Michael Kiwanuka, Odetta, original music by Darrin Ross, and the voice of Alvin Ailey. Trailblazers repeats on Sat, 6/15 at 8pm.
On Sunday, June 16 at 3pm, audiences will have the opportunity to experience excerpts from over a dozen treasures by the Company's groundbreaking founder during the Timeless Ailey program. Excerpts from rarely seen gems, including Hidden Rites, Opus McShann, The Lark Ascending, and For "Bird" - With Love, will be joined by perennial favorites like Memoria, Night Creature, and Cry.
The season culminates on Sunday, June 16 at 7:30pm with a special evening honoring dance icon Carmen de Lavallade. Audiences and Ms. de Lavallade herself will share in the chance to see current dancers perform roles originally danced by the living legend, including excerpts from Alvin Ailey's Blues Suite, his first ballet for the Company, and John Butler's Portrait of Billie, about the iconic jazz singer Billie Holiday. The evening also includes Ronald K. Brown's The Call, which pays homage to the cherished relationship between Mr. Ailey and Ms. de Lavallade, alongside Darrell Grand Moultrie's world premiere. A close friend of Alvin Ailey's who first introduced him to dance when they were high school students in Los Angeles, Ms. de Lavallade later journeyed with him to New York where they starred together on Broadway in Truman Capote's House of Flowers. She went on to have an illustrious career in dance, theater, and film, and returned to perform as a guest star with the Company throughout the years. This is a Young New York performance and invites ticket-buyers between ages 21-35 to enjoy 50% off tickets $55 and over.
Each performance culminates with Alvin Ailey's American masterpiece Revelations. Since its creation in 1960, Revelations has been seen by more audiences around the world than any other modern work, inspiring generations through its powerful storytelling and soul-stirring spirituals. Springing from Ailey's childhood memories of growing up in the south and attending services at Mount Olive Baptist Church in Texas, Revelations pays homage to the rich African-American cultural heritage and explores the emotional spectrum of the human condition.
Tickets for the Lincoln Center engagement starting at $29 can be purchased at the David H. Koch Box Office, by phone at 212-496-0600, and online at alvinailey.org/LC. Discount tickets are available for students with an appropriate ID and for groups of 10 or more (discounts do not apply to $29 tickets). For group sales, call 212-405-9082 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Ailey Young New York invites those between the ages of 21 - 35 to purchase 50% off tickets $55 and over for the Sunday evening performance (up to 6 tickets). For further information, please visit www.alvinailey.org. The program schedule is detailed on page 4.
Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater's current 60th Anniversary 21-city national tour will culminate on Mother's Day weekend May 10 - 12 at the beautiful Prudential Hall of the New Jersey Performing Arts Center, where Ailey is the Principal Resident Affiliate. For schedule and tickets, visit www.njpac.org.
Photo Credit: Paul Kolnik