New York – September 1, 2021 – Robert Battle, Artistic Director of Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, announced today that internationally renowned performer, choreographer, director, and multi-disciplinary artist Francesca Harper has been appointed Artistic Director of Ailey II, the Ailey organization’s acclaimed company of young dancers. Ms. Harper will assume her duties on September 7, 2021, and will immediately begin preparing for Ailey II’s return to the stage. Ailey II’s 2021-2022 season will kick off in December with participation in Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater’s annual season at New York City Center, in which Ailey II will perform in Mr. Ailey’s classic Memoria, and will continue with the company’s own 2022 New York City season March 23-April 3 at The Ailey Citigroup Theater, as well as a U.S. tour.
Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, recognized by U.S. Congressional resolution as a vital American “Cultural Ambassador to the World,” has performed for over 25 million people in 48 states and in 71 countries on 6 continents, celebrating the African-American cultural experience and the American modern dance tradition. Ailey’s permanent home is The Joan Weill Center for Dance, the largest building dedicated to dance in New York City, the dance capital of the world.
The Ailey Organization includes: Ailey II (a second performing company of young dancers and emerging choreographers), The Ailey School (one of the world's most extensive dance training programs), Ailey Arts In Education & Community Programs (which bring dance into classrooms and communities), and Ailey Extension (offering dance and fitness classes to the public).