A Celebration Of Continuing Excellence
For six decades the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater has delivered a distinct and inspiring kind of artistry
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Evan Tyrone Martin in "An Unforgettable Nat King Cole Christmas."
(Photograph by Michael Brosilow)
AS the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater’s promotion proclaims: “You don't just see an Ailey performance, you FEEL it.” Chicagoans can see and feel that experience when the “Ailey Ascending 60th Anniversary” celebration brings its groundbreaking artistry to the Auditorium Theatre for six shows from March 6-10.
The legendary company commemorates its 60th anniversary and the 50th anniversary performing at the Auditorium Theatre as part of its 21-city North American tour that celebrates founder Alvin Ailey and ends on May 21 in Newark.
During this celebratory tour, presentations will include the Midwest premiere of the group's first-ever two-act ballet Lazarus, choreographed by Rennie Harris and inspired by company founder Alvin Ailey’s life and struggles against racial inequality. Other highlights include the Midwest premieres of Wayne McGregor’s Kairos and Jessica Lang’s EN. As it has been in the past, each performance ends with a production of Ailey's timeless masterpiece Revelations, Ailey’s most popular and critically acclaimed presentation, which has been an audience favorite since 1960.
Even though Ailey was the visionary behind an amazing 79 ballets before his death in 1989, the iconic creator maintained that his company was not established exclusively for his own work. Currently, the company, under the leadership of Artistic Director Robert Battle, continues Ailey's mission by presenting various works of the past and commissioning new ones. In all, more than 235 works by more than 90 choreographers have been part of the Ailey company’s repertory.
In 2008, a U.S. Congressional resolution designated the Company as “a vital American cultural ambassador to the world” that celebrates the uniqueness of the African-American cultural experience and the preservation and enrichment of the American modern dance heritage. During its history, the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater has performed for more than 23 million people in 48 states and in 71 countries on six continents.
For more information and tickets, go to www.auditoriumtheatre.org.
Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater's Samantha Figgins and Jeroboam Bozeman. Photograph by Andrew Eccles