The opening program on Thursday, February 10th at 7:30pm will raise the curtain on a celebration of five decades of Alvin Ailey's beloved Revelations, an American classic called a must-see for all people. A short film will be shown prior to Revelations at each performance, giving audiences the opportunity to learn about the inspiration, meaning and significance of this modern dance masterpiece that is a tribute to Alvin Ailey's genius and the resolve and determination of the human spirit. Directed by Judy Kinberg, winner of seven primetime Emmy Awards, it includes historic performance footage and rare interviews with Alvin Ailey and Judith Jamison.
"We are thrilled to share this exciting time in Ailey's history with Atlanta," said Jamison. "We're on a journey that began 52 years ago because of Alvin Ailey's genius. His Revelations is a profound manifestation of how dance can celebrate the human spirit and impact our hearts and minds. During this memorable season, as I introduce Robert Battle to audiences, my incredible dancers will be shining their light brightly as we begin another five decades of inspiring performances."
Performances on Thursday, Feb. 10 at 7:30pm, Saturday, Feb. 12 at 2pm and Sunday, Feb. 13 at 3pm will also include debuts of The Hunt, Battle's explosive tour-de-force for six men; a new production of Cry, Ailey's birthday gift for his mother and Jamison's signature solo; and the first full production in more than 30 years of Three Black Kings, an important work resulting from Alvin Ailey's legendary collaboration with the great Duke Ellington. Set to Ellington's last major score, the three-part ballet brings to life Balthazar, the Black king of the Nativity; Solomon, King of Israel; and Martin Luther King, Jr., Ellington's friend whose triumphs are celebrated in the inspiring finale.
Programs on Friday, Feb. 11 and Saturday, Feb. 12 at 8pm will also feature the Atlanta premiere of Anointed, former Company Member Christopher L. Huggins tribute to Ailey's past, present and future featuring the music of Moby and Sean Clements, and Forgotten Time, Judith Jamison's quietly uplifting work set to the haunting, otherworldly sounds of Le Mystere des Voix Bulgares;
"Working with Ms. Jamison and Ailey's amazing dancers this season, and touring the world with the Company, has been truly amazing and humbling," said Battle. "It is a privilege to share the gift of Ailey with Atlanta and to continue delivering on the promise of keeping The Company fresh, exciting and soul-stirring so that Ailey's pioneering legacy continues to inspire and enlighten."
Over the last two decades Jamison, who was honored by First Lady Michelle Obama at the first White House Dance Series: A Tribute to Judith Jamison, has led Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater to new heights around the world and into a permanent home – the nation's largest building dedicated to dance. Named to TIME's 2009 list of the world's 100 most influential people, she is the recipient of the Kennedy Center Honors, the BET Honors, and the National Medal of Arts. Jamison will past the mantle of leadership to Battle on July 1, 2011.
- Thursday, Feb. 10 at 7:30 p.m. (Three Black Kings, Cry, The Hunt, Revelations film, Revelations)
- Friday, Feb. 11 at 8 p.m. (Anointed, Forgotten Time, Revelations film, Revelations)
- Saturday, Feb. 12 at 2 p.m. (Three Black Kings, Cry, The Hunt, Revelations film, Revelations)
- Saturday, Feb. 12 at 8 p.m. (Anointed, Forgotten Time, Revelations film, Revelations)
- Sunday, Feb. 13 at 3 p.m. (Three Black Kings, Cry, The Hunt, Revelations film, Revelations)
Calendar Listing Information:
Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, one of the world's favorite dance companies, returns to the Fabulous Fox Theatre February 10-13, as part of a 24-city U.S. Tour celebrating 50 years of Alvin Ailey's timeless masterpiece, Revelations. Led by Artistic Director Judith Jamison in her final season, and joined by Artistic Director Designate Robert Battle, Ailey's acclaimed dancers, will move audiences with exciting premieres, dramatic new productions, repertory favorites and classic Revelations.
REPERTORY FOR ATLANTA ENGAGEMENT
WORLD & COMPANY PREMIERES
Choreographer: Christopher L. Huggins Music: Moby & Sean Clements
Former Ailey company member Christopher L. Huggins makes his first contribution to Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater's repertory with a new creation using music by Moby and Sean Clements. Having worked as a choreographer for the past 18 years throughout the U.S., Europe, and Japan, his works for Ailey include When Dawn Comes... (2008) for Ailey II and Echoes of Alvin (2008) for The Ailey School. He was the 2002 recipient of the Ira Aldridge Award for best choreography for his work Enemy Behind the Gates for Philadanco. He has also choreographed for Cleo Parker Robinson Dance Ensemble, Dallas Black Dance Theatre, and Lula Washington Dance Theatre, among others. In 2007 National Public Radio named him "(a) choreographer to watch..."
The Hunt (2001)
Choreographer: Robert Battle Music: Les Tambours du Bronx
Artistic director designate Robert Battle's athletic work for six men reveals the predatory side of human nature and the primitive thrill of the hunt. A thundering percussion soundtrack by Les Tambours du Bronx drives the explosive movement that runs the gamut from modern sports to the rituals of the gladiators. This is Mr. Battle's sixth work for the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater.
Three Black Kings (1976)
Choreographer: Alvin Ailey Music: Duke Ellington
Alvin Ailey's three-part ballet, set to Duke Ellington's last major score, brings to life Balthazar, the Black king of the Nativity; Solomon, King of Israel; and Martin Luther King, Jr., Ellington's friend whose triumphs are celebrated in the inspiring finale. Sophisticated, lush and alluring, Ellington's music became part of a legendary collaboration with Alvin Ailey and left an indelible mark on American dance. At its premiere, The New York Times noted "...with its crescendo of gospel rhythms and its expressionist symbols of marches and martyrdom...moves the spectator" and The Daily News hailed the work as "An intensely moving vision..."
Forgotten Time (1989)
Choreographer: Judith Jamison Music: Le Mystere des Voix Bulgares
In Judith Jamison's quietly uplifting work, the haunting, otherworldly sounds of Le Mystere des Voix Bulgares channels 12 dancers on a journey through ancient rituals of love and tribal rites of passage. Moments of complex partnering, dramatic imagery and breathtaking stillness are part of a sophisticated choreographic structure that evokes deep emotions and echoes with universal significance.
Choreographer: Alvin Ailey Music: Alice Coltrane, Laura Nyro, Voices of East Harlem
Alvin Ailey's Cry, choreographed as a birthday present for his mother, Mrs. Lula Cooper, and created the dance on his stunning muse, Judith Jamison, was an instant sensation. Dedicated to "all black women everywhere – especially our mothers," the 16minute tour-de-force solo in three sections is set to Alice Coltrane's "Something about John Coltrane," Laura Nyro's "Been on a Train" and "Right On, Be Free" by the Voices of East Harlem. Ms. Jamison, who has since taught the treasured role to subsequent generations of Ailey women, wrote of the work in her autobiography Dancing Spirit: "In my interpretation, she represented those women before her who came from the hardships of slavery, through the pain of losing loved ones, through overcoming extraordinary depressions and tribulations. Coming out of a world of pain and trouble, she has found her way-and triumphed."
Ailey Signature Masterpiece
Choreography: Alvin Ailey Music: Traditional
This season celebrates five decades of Alvin Ailey's timeless masterpiece, Revelations, an American classic called a must-see for all people. Alvin Ailey said that one of America'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 - this suite fervently explores the places of deepest grief and holiest joy in the soul.
A documentary short film will set the stage this year, beginning each performance with an introduction to the history, meaning and significance of Revelations over the last half century. Directed by Judy Kinberg, winner of seven primetime Emmy Awards, it will include exclusive footage of Alvin Ailey and interviews with Judith Jamison and others. CELEBRATING REVELATIONS AT 50 FILM - Produced and Directed by Judy Kinberg, Director of Photography: Tom Hurwitz, Animation Designer: Todd Ruff, Edited by Andrew Morreale Generous support was provided by the Jean L. & Robert A. Stern Foundation.
ALVIN AILEY AMERICAN DANCE THEATER:
Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, recognized by U.S. Congressional resolution as a vital American "Cultural Ambassador to the World," grew from a now-fabled 1958 New York performance that changed American dance. Now led by Judith Jamison, joined by artistic director designate Robert Battle, the Company has performed for an estimated 23 million people in 71 countries on six continents, including two historic residencies in South Africa, celebrating the African-American cultural experience and the American modern dance tradition. The Ailey organization also includes: Ailey II (1974), a second company of young dancers and choreographers; The Ailey School (1969), extensive dance training programs; Ailey Arts in Education & Community Programs, bringing dance into classrooms and communities; and The Ailey Extension, dance and fitness classes for the general public at Ailey's home – The Joan Weill Center for Dance in New York City—the nation's largest building for dance.