The Ailey Extension

Since 2005, the Ailey Extension has offered "real classes for real people."  With more than 80 classes a week in over 25 different dance and fitness techniques, there's something for everyone at any experience level (ages 16 and up).  For information on the Ailey Extension weekly class schedule, please visit: aileyextension.com

Featured News Releases

Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater Dances Through Pride Month With Celebrations Onstage And Off

(New York) May 31, 2019 – Pioneering dancer, choreographer, founder, and LGBT icon Alvin Ailey will forever be remembered for taking a stand for equality, shining a spotlight on social justice, using his artistry to open hearts and minds around the world, and creating a safe space for other artists of all backgrounds to share their stories. Mr. Ailey said, “to be who you are and become what you are capable of is the only goal worth living." Carrying forward his revolutionary legacy, the Ailey organization celebrates Pride Month 2019 with an array of inspiring activities that will bring audiences to their feet and into the studios, including special performances during Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater’s Lincoln Center engagement (June 12-16) and two Pride workshops for all movers at Ailey Extension.

Ailey Extension Celebrates NYC Dance Week, June 13-22, With Free Classes To Unleash Your Inner Dancer

(New York) May 22, 2019 – This June, Ailey Extension invites New Yorkers to celebrate dance onstage and off when NYC Dance Week returns Thursday, June 13 through Saturday, June 22, coinciding with Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater’s Lincoln Center engagement June 12-16, 2019. Throughout the annual citywide festival, Ailey Extension will offer over 25 free* dance and fitness classes for adults of all experience levels at The Joan Weill Center for Dance – New York’s largest building dedicated to dance and the official home of Ailey. As a bonus, the entire family can come together on the dance floor during NYC Dance Week for a lively celebration of music, dance, and oral traditions with a free West African Family class with Maguette Camara on Friday, June 14 at 6:30pm.

Get Your Heart Pumping With Ailey Extension During American Heart Month

(New York) February 4, 2019 – This February, Ailey Extension welcomes students to the Joan Weill Center for Dance – New York’s largest building dedicated to dance and home of Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater – to adopt heart healthy behaviors through new and exciting dance and fitness classes for everyone. During American Heart Month, join us on the dance floor to improve cardiovascular health and lower the risk for developing heart disease with Ailey Extension’s Class of the Week, a one-time-only discounted class that will be announced each Monday during the month of February. Students can keep their heart rate up with friends, loved ones, coworkers, and others in the Ailey community during a special Valentine’s Day Salsa class that will get everyone moving and grooving to the rhythms of passionate Latin music and dance. Ailey Extension’s “real classes for real people” are open to dancers of all levels and backgrounds – including absolute beginners.

Featured Press Coverage

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CBS New York - Ailey Extension Dance Studio Offering Dozens Of Free Classes For NYC Dance Week

NYC Dance Week is in full swing, and Ailey Extension is celebrating by offering dozens of free classes for new students. Instructor Karen Arceneaux says potential students shouldn't be intimidated by the name Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater. "We have real classes for real people, so if you're a beginner, if you've never taken a class before, you can come in. It's a welcoming environment. It's inclusive, and at the end of class, you feel like a dancer,' Arceneaux said.

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New York Magazine "The Cut" - In Her Shoes: The Dance Director Who Loves A Bright Suit

As the director of Alvin Ailey’s public dance and fitness center, Ailey Extension, Lisa Johnson-Willingham is literally on the move, constantly. On any given day she could be teaching a master class to students, taking a dance class herself, meeting with clients about potential partnerships, or all of the above. Add to that two teenage children, and Johnson- Willingham has a packed schedule that takes her from parent-teacher conferences to red-carpet appearances. To ensure she’s always appropriately dressed, her desk doesn’t just house extra shoes, but also workout clothes and the occasional camisole for after-hours events.

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W 42 St - Let's Dance!

Remember the first half of Footloose? Where dance isn't allowed and no one does it? That's where I live. I don't want to dance with somebody and my hips do, in fact, lie. That being said, this month someone hit fast forward on my movie and I found myself at the warehouse dance party aka Ailey Dance Extension. With more than 90 weekly classes, I was quite overwhelmed with my choices. I started with salsa.