Christopher Zunner, 212.405.9028
ALVIN AILEY AMERICAN DANCE THEATER
50th ANNIVERSARY INTERNATIONAL TOUR
ISRAEL, TURKEY, ROMANIA, GREECE, ITALY AND SPAIN TO WELCOME AMERICA’S CULTURAL AMBASSADORS
“Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater…has earned and kept its place as one of America’s foremost cultural ambassadors.” - The Sunday Times (London)
(New York) September 8, 2008 – The world-renowned Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater will take its 50th Anniversary celebration global during a 2008 International Tour from September 9 - October 19. Beginning in Tel Aviv, Israel, these overseas performances are the first of the 50th Anniversary Season and since being officially recognized by the United States Congress as a vital American Cultural Ambassador to the World. Led by Artistic Director Judith Jamison, the tour will continue to Istanbul, Turkey; Bucharest, Romania; Athens, Greece; Piacenza, Bolzano, and Trieste, Italy; and Las Palmas and Tenerife, Spain, and include programs packed with acclaimed classic repertory, sensational new productions, and contemporary favorites.
Performances will feature classic works from Alvin Ailey’s legendary collaboration with Duke Ellington, including Night Creature, Ailey’s definitive homage to the exuberance of The Duke’s jazz, and Reflections in D, a solo Alvin Ailey originally created for himself that will now be performed by a new generation of acclaimed Ailey dancers. Revelations, Ailey’s most beloved ballet, which has been seen by more people around the world than any other work, will conclude each program on the tour.
A new production of Suite Otis, choreographed by George Faison to the timeless music of Otis Redding, will be revived for the first time since 1996. Another tour highlight is Love Stories, Judith Jamison’s dynamic collaboration with modern dance maverick Robert Battle and hip-hop phenomenon Rennie Harris.
Ailey’s 18-month 50th Anniversary celebration will continue over the next year with performances in 50 cities, an archive exhibit presented by the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C. and Los Angeles, and special commemorative merchandise, such as: Hallmark Ailey greeting cards; Ailey/Celebration Calendar and Ailey Ascending, a photographic art book, both by Andrew Eccles; an Ailey Movado Museum Time Piece; and an Ailey Barbie® Doll. Tickets are now on sale for the 2008 New York City Center Season from December 3, 2008 - January 4, 2009. For details, visit: www.alvinailey.org/50.
Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater has performed for an estimated 21 million people in over 70 countries on 6 continents, becoming the world’s most-traveled dance company. Founded by Alvin Ailey in 1958, the Ailey company’s inspiring performances honor and enrich the African American cultural experience and the American modern dance tradition, uniting people of all backgrounds in a celebration of the human spirit through the universal language of dance.
Detailed performance schedule attached.
Choreography: Maurice Béjart
Restaged by: Shonach Mirk Robles
Music: Igor Stravinsky “The Firebird Suite”
The legendary European choreographer Maurice Béjart’s famous ballet is a coming of age allegorical tale of revolution, idealism and rebirth. An innovative interpretation of the 1910 Michel Fokine original for Ballets Russes and set to Igor Stravinsky’s glorious score; it features a male Firebird and Phoenix surrounded by a full chorus, showcasing the power and beauty of the Ailey dancers in radiant grandeur.
“…this notorious European ballet fits the company well. Mr. [Clifton] Brown electrifies the stage…”
- The New York Sun
The Golden Section (1983)
Choreography: Twyla Tharp
Music: David Byrne
The Golden Section by Tony Award-winning choreographer Twyla Tharp sizzles like never before when performed by the fearless Ailey dancers. Set to a propulsive score by David Byrne, it shatters the limits of human physicality with breathtaking leaps, finely-honed partnering and explosive joy.
“[The Golden Section is] dancing of astonishing beauty and power.” -The New Yorker
Love Stories (2004)
Choreography: Judith Jamison with Robert Battle and Rennie Harris
Music: Stevie Wonder
Inspired by Sankofa, the Akan word which means “go back” (Sanko) and “take” (fa), Judith Jamison’s dynamic collaboration with hip-hop pioneer Rennie Harris and modern dance maverick Robert Battle examines the technique, energy, movement and rhythm of African-American social dances on a journey through past, present and future. Under Jamison’s direction, the unique styles, expressive voices and no-limits choreography of these artists draw on variations on the lindy-hop, Philly-bop, hip-hop and eclectic modern dance techniques to explore a love of movement, all set to the soundscape of engineer Darrin Ross and the music of the legendary Stevie Wonder.
“astoundingly well danced… a breakthrough in creative choreography” -The New York Times
Night Creature (1974)
Choreography: Alvin Ailey
Music: Duke Ellington
"Night creatures, unlike stars, do not come OUT at night-they come ON, each thinking that before the night is out he or she will be the star" - Duke Ellington
In Night Creature, Alvin Ailey’s classically influenced choreography juxtaposes with Duke Ellington’s jazz idiom. One of Mr. Ailey’s most popular works, and his definitive homage to the exuberance of The Duke’s jazz, the dance captivates with Ailey’s sensual nocturnal rituals, propelling the movement into a fast-paced climatic catharsis using slow jazz walks, boogie woogie and ballet arabesques to create prowling patterns and communal configurations.
“One of Mr. Ailey’s happiest works. It has a joyful pulse, a sophisticated entente with its sophisticated music that carries on the best of the Ellington tradition.” - The New York Times
Reflections in D (1962)
Choreography: Alvin Ailey
Restaged by: Judith Jamison
Music: Duke Ellington
Alvin Ailey’s eloquent solo, created in 1962 for himself and later notably interpreted by Judith Jamison and Dudley Williams, is masterly performed by current Ailey soloists to Duke Ellington’s touchingly reflective composition for solo piano.
“Making something so rigorous look easy — and Mr. [Clifton] Brown does… also part of what makes Ailey’s fluid, inherently theatrical choreography so significant.” - The New York Times
Choreography: Alvin Ailey
Music: Traditional Spirituals
Alvin Ailey said that one ofAmerica’s richest treasures was the cultural heritage of the African-American—“sometimes sorrowful, sometimes jubilant, but always hopeful”. This enduring classic is a tribute to that heritage and to Ailey’s genius. Using African-American religious music--spirituals, song-sermons, gospel songs and holy blues--this suite fervently explores the places of deepest grief and holiest joy in the soul.
“Revelations is a phenomenon. Accessible, moving, exhilarating and profound, it speaks to everyone. There is nothing else like it in the world of dance.” -The Washington Times
Choreography: Hans van Manen
Music: Johann Sebastian Bach
Hans van Manen divides his kinetic Solo among three dancers in a tour de force work that challenges the Ailey men’s daring agility and grace. This explosive display of virtuosity and wit launches the men into an exhilarating whirlwind of movement and musicality.
Solo, “epitomizes dance at its essence.” -The San Francisco Examiner
Choreography: Robert Battle
Music: Gustave Charpentier, sung by Leontyne Price
Choreography: Robert Battle; Music: Gustave Charpentier, sung by Leontyne Price
This duet was dubbed “a highlight” by Dance Magazine at its premiere in 2005. Previously, Robert Battle choreography has been seen in two works in the repertory of both Ailey II and Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater.
“Brown and Linda Celeste Sims gave a mesmerizing performance of Unfold… the pair dance as if they’d just survived a cataclysmic event…” - Boston Globe
Suite Otis (1971)
Choreography and costumes: George Faison
Music: Otis Redding
Lighting: Chenault Spence
A Tribute to the Late Otis Redding
In this seminal six-part work set to sizzling music by Otis Redding, Faison’s inventive choreography is ripe with romance and humor, depicting vignettes of young lovers out on the town.
“a classic with an unquenchably youthful spirit. …Mr. Faison captures the yearning sensuality of the music in taut jazz dance for dancers who strain toward one another and to the sky.” -The New York Times
(Programs are subject to change)
TEL AVIV, ISRAEL Israeli Opera Tel Aviv - Yafo
Tuesday, 9/9/08 @ 8:00pm FIREBIRD / THE GOLDEN SECTION / REFLECTIONS IN D, REVELATIONS
Wednesday, 9/10/08 @ 8:00pm NIGHT CREATURE, SOLO / LOVE STORIES / REVELATIONS
Thursday, 9/11/08 @ 8:00pm FIREBIRD / THE GOLDEN SECTION / REFLECTIONS IN D, REVELATIONS
Friday, 9/12/08 @ 1:00pm FIREBIRD / THE GOLDEN SECTION / REFLECTIONS IN D, REVELATIONS
Friday, 9/12/08 @ 9:00pm NIGHT CREATURE, SOLO / LOVE STORIES / REVELATIONS
Saturday, 9/13/08 @ 4:00pm NIGHT CREATURE, SOLO / LOVE STORIES / REVELATIONS
Saturday, 9/13/08 @ 9:00pm FIREBIRD / THE GOLDEN SECTION / REFLECTIONS IN D, REVELATIONS
ISTANBUL, TURKEY Lutfi Kirdar Cultural Center
Wednesday, 9/17/08 @ 8:30pm NIGHT CREATURE, SOLO / LOVE STORIES / REVELATIONS
Thursday, 9/18/08 @ 8:30pm NIGHT CREATURE, SOLO / LOVE STORIES / REVELATIONS
Friday, 9/19/08 @ 8:30pm NIGHT CREATURE, SOLO / LOVE STORIES / REVELATIONS
BUCHAREST, ROMANIA Sala Palatului
Monday, 9/22/08 @ 7:00pm NIGHT CREATURE, SOLO / LOVE STORIES / REVELATIONS
ATHENS, GREECE Herodes Atticus Odeon
Friday, 9/26/08 @ 8:30pm NIGHT CREATURE, SOLO, LOVE STORIES / REVELATIONS
Saturday, 9/27/08 @ 8:30pm FIREBIRD, SOLO, THE GOLDEN SECTION / REVELATIONS
PIACENZA, ITALY Teatro Municipale
Wednesday, 10/1/08 @ 8:30pm NIGHT CREATURE, REFLECTIONS IN D / LOVE STORIES / REVELATIONS
Thursday, 10/2/08 @ 8:30pm NIGHT CREATURE, REFLECTIONS IN D / LOVE STORIES / REVELATIONS
Friday, 10/3/08 @ 8:30pm THE GOLDEN SECTION / SUITE OTIS / SOLO, REVELATIONS
Saturday, 10/4/08 @ 3:30pm THE GOLDEN SECTION / SUITE OTIS / SOLO, REVELATIONS
Saturday, 10/4/08 @ 8:30pm NIGHT CREATURE, REFLECTIONS IN D / LOVE STORIES / REVELATIONS
LAS PALMAS, SPAIN Teatro Perez Galdos
Tuesday, 10/7/08 @ 8:30pm NIGHT CREATURE, SOLO / LOVE STORIES / REVELATIONS
Wednesday, 10/8/08 @ 8:30pm NIGHT CREATURE, SOLO / LOVE STORIES / REVELATIONS
Thursday, 10/9/08 @ 12:00pm NIGHT CREATURE, SOLO / LOVE STORIES / REVELATIONS
TENERIFE, SPAIN Auditorio de Tenerife
Saturday, 10/11/08 @ 9:00pm NIGHT CREATURE, UNFOLD / SUITE OTIS / REVELATIONS
Sunday, 10/12/08 @ 9:00pm NIGHT CREATURE, UNFOLD / SUITE OTIS / REVELATIONS
BOLZANO, ITALY Nuovo Teatro Comunale
Tuesday, 10/14/08 @ 8:00pm NIGHT CREATURE, SOLO / LOVE STORIES / REVELATIONS
Wednesday, 10/15/08 @ 8:00pm THE GOLDEN SECTION / SUITE OTIS, REFLECTIONS IN D / UNFOLD, REVELATIONS
Thursday, 10/16/08 @ 8:00pm NIGHT CREATURE, SOLO / LOVE STORIES / REVELATIONS
TRIESTE, ITALY Teatro Politeama Rossetti
Saturday, 10/18/08 @ 8:30pm NIGHT CREATURE, UNFOLD / LOVE STORIES / REVELATIONS
Sunday, 10/19/08 @ 4:00pm NIGHT CREATURE, UNFOLD / LOVE STORIES / REVELATIONS
Sunday, 10/19/08 @ 8:30pm NIGHT CREATURE, UNFOLD / LOVE STORIES / REVELATIONS
Citi provides major support for the Alvin Ailey Dance Foundation’s
Arts In Education programs.
Altria Group provides major support for Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater’s New Works Fund.
Movado Group provides major support for “Firebird,” a new production during
Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater’s 2007-2008 season.
American Airlines is the Official Airline of the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater.
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Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, America’s Cultural Ambassador to the World, was founded in 1958 and has performed for more than 21 million people in 71 countries and on 6 continents. Alvin Ailey Dance Foundation, Inc. is the umbrella organization which includes Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater; Ailey II, founded in 1974 as a junior performing company of emerging young dancers and innovative choreographers; The Ailey School, founded in 1969 and currently offering some of the most extensive dance training programs in the world; Ailey Arts In Education & Community Programs which is committed to bringing dance into the classrooms, communities and lives of people throughout the world; and The Ailey Extension, a program that offers dance and fitness classes to the general public.