When the choreographer Troy Powell was a student at the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater's school, more than forty years ago, he was struck, he remembered recently, by "these men that looked like me, these men that danced!" The other night, when he again found himself moved by a young man who looked like him, he was less surprised: Powell had handpicked the boy for the resemblance. The occasion for the body double was Powell's newest work, "Testimony," choreographed for the Ailey School's fiftieth-anniversary gala, at Lincoln Center.
NYC Vibe - The Alvin Ailey School Celebrated 50 Years With A Dramatic Gala Performance At Lincoln Center
Alvin Ailey founded his world class dance company in 1958 and nine years later started a school of dance which this night celebrated its 50th anniversary - as a part of the Ailey Spirit Gala, the annual fund raiser for scholarships, like the one Troy Powell, a dancer and choreographer received, the audience enjoyed Testimony, a ballet choreographed following a young boy’s journey from the schoolyard to the main stage.
Alvin Ailey is a name synonymous with both world-class ballet and the black American experience. Ailey founded his dance company in 1958 to showcase the best black talent, and, in 1969, a school of dance. And last night, the company celebrated its school’s 50th anniversary, at Lincoln Center.
In 1979, a young New York City boy met Alvin Ailey at his public elementary school during a dance workshop; unbeknownst to him it was an audition. Then nine-year-old Troy Powell had no idea who Mr. Ailey was and no formal dance training, although he came from a large African American family where dance was interwoven into their everyday home life. "I was handpicked to join the first children's program at The Ailey School, and the experience made a huge impact and changed my life," says Powell, who continued to climb the ranks through the School's professional division, Ailey II, and Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater. He succeeded Sylvia Waters in 2012 as Ailey II's Artistic Director.
Troy Powell remembers the late Alvin Ailey fondly. The legendary choreographer saw something in Powell at nine years old and recruited him for a children’s program after leading a masterclass at his elementary school. Perhaps that’s why, when asked about Ailey’s legacy, Powell says simply, “It's magical.”
NY1's Stephanie Simon visits Ailey II's artistic director, Troy Powell, and dancers Corrin Rachelle Mitchell and Leonardo Brito, for a sneak peek into Powell's first work for the company, Ebb and Flow. Ailey II will be performing at NYU's Skirball Theatre March 13-17.
The Next Generation of Dance will take the stage this week at NYU Skirball, continuing a 60-year legacy. Artistic Director Troy Powell and dancer Alisha Peek discussed the event with 1010 WINS Sharon Barnes-Waters on a recent episode of "City Views."
When Troy Powell talks about the power of dance, you can almost see his face light up 600 miles away in Red Wing, Minn., where the Ailey II dance company is performing a week before arriving in Toledo. "We are all dancers in our own right," the artistic director says with the zeal of a missionary. "When I say dancing, I mean everyone is born to move. Everyone's born with a rhythm, that heartbeat or tone."
Troy Powell is carrying on the legacy of legendary choreographer Alvin Ailey with Ailey II, the young, 12-member dance company that will perform tonight at the Aspen District Theatre. Powell, the artistic director of Ailey II, has spent nearly his entire life exploring and performing Ailey's groundbreaking work reflecting the African-American journey.
Destination Dance, the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater’s initiative to produce year-round programming in Atlanta, will wrap up its pilot season this weekend with performances that could launch a locally based choreographer to new heights. Juel D. Lane will make his choreographic debut with Ailey II, the organization’s second company, with “Touch & Agree (2017),” which premieres Oct. 21 alongside Renee I. McDonald’s “Breaking Point” and Ailey’s “Revelations” at the Rialto Center for the Arts.