Alvin Ailey's Opening Night Gala Benefit to Honor Debra L. Lee

Alvin Ailey's Opening Night Gala Benefit to Honor Debra L. Lee

Alvin Ailey's Opening Night Gala Benefit to Honor Debra L. Lee

On Wednesday, November 29th at 7pm, Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater's five-week holiday season kicks off with a star-studded gala benefit, including a performance at New York City Center and party at the New York Hilton Midtown Grand Ballroom. The Gala honors Ailey Board President Debra L. Lee (Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of BET Networks) for her commitment to the advancement of arts and culture and her dedication to the organization, which has helped steer Ailey to success since she joined the Board in 2002. Honorary Chairs for the evening are music and film stars Queen Latifah and Janelle Monáe. Queen Latifah is an actress, singer, songwriter and producer and has earned numerous awards including a Grammy, an Emmy, and a Golden Globe. Singer-songwriter Janelle Monáe, a six-time Grammy nominee, rose to silver screen fame last year in the Academy Award nominated film Hidden Figures and Best Picture winner Moonlight.

The one-night-only program features excerpts of dynamic works set to music by soul icons: George Faison's Suite Otis (Otis Redding), Love Stories by Judith Jamison, Robert Battle, and Rennie Harris (Stevie Wonder), Camille Brown's The Groove to Nobody's Business (Ray Charles), and David Parson's Shining Star (Earth, Wind & Fire). The performance culminates with Alvin Ailey's masterpiece, Revelations, performed with live musicians and singers. Prominent figures in the worlds of entertainment, business, philanthropy and politics will join Artistic Director Robert Battle and dancers for dinner and dancing to live music in the New York Hilton Midtown's Grand Ballroom following the performance.

The Gala benefits the creation of new works, scholarships to The Ailey School, and Ailey's educational programs for young people. Deedra & Bob Bakish, Emily & Len Blavatnik, Paulette & Howard Bradnock, Daria L. & Eric J. Wallach, and Joan & Sandy Weill will serve as Co-Chairs for the Gala. Call 212-405-9031 for tickets.

Ailey's holiday season of new works and returning favorites also features special programs such as an evening Celebrating the Men of Ailey; All Ailey, All Jazz, and All New programs; a Christmas Eve performance; and culminates with a New Year's Eve Season Finale. Click here for more information. Tickets for season performances start at $29, and are on sale at the New York City Center Box Office, through CityTix at (212) 581-1212, or online at or

Photo credit: Christopher Duggan