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

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.

Ailey Icons Host Exclusive Workshops And Panels In Celebration Of 60th Anniversary

(New York) December 6, 2018 – In celebration of Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater’s 60th Anniversary, Ailey Extension invites people to experience the life, legacy, and artistry of Alvin Ailey through intimate panels and workshops led by his illustrious former dancers. Sylvia Waters will moderate the Growing Up with Alvin Ailey Legacy Panel on December 10, featuring former Ailey stars Sarita Allen, Elizabeth Roxas-Dobrish, and Desmond Richardson as they share personal stories, individual experiences, and life lessons learned during their tenure dancing for the legendary founder. On January 5, what would have been Alvin Ailey’s 88th birthday, Artistic Director Emerita Judith Jamison leads an exclusive Celebrating Alvin Ailey Workshop to share cherished memories of Mr. Ailey and teach some of his most well-known choreography.

Featured Press Coverage

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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.

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New York Post - Senior Momentum

They're putting the 'age' in agile! Meet NYC's top fitness pros over 65, including Ailey Extension instructor, Finis Jhung. Despite having his hip replaced in 2017, Jhung continues to teach adult beginner ballet classes at the Ailey Extension in Hells Kitchen.