Thursday, March 27, 2008

Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater Celebrates Golden Anniversary

Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater (AAADT) announced the 18-month commemoration of its 50th anniversary, including events, promotions, collaborations and special performances at The Joan Weill Center for Dance today. The organization also announced plans to celebrate the official anniversary date Sunday, March 30 with faith-based organizations, in honor of the spiritual heritage of founder Alvin Ailey's youth. This legacy remains at the core of the organization and its unique preservation of the African American cultural experience.

The Sunday celebrations will take place in nearly 40 churches and other faith-based organizations across New York City. Festivities include dedicating a portion of the services to honoring the Ailey legacy, with choirs singing spirituals from Alvin Ailey's masterpiece Revelations, and dance ministries performing works inspired by the beauty and humanity of AAADT. Ms. Jamison's hometown church in Philadelphia, as well as Mr. Ailey's childhood church in Rogers, Texas, will also mark the occasion.

"With the spirit and passion of Alvin Ailey in our hearts and a solid foundation for the future in our hands, we are excited to embark on 18 months of celebrations, all honoring Mr. Ailey's dream and the organization's core mission that inspires and unites people of all backgrounds through the universal language of dance," said Artistic Director Judith Jamison.

AAADT also announced that it will enhance its traditional season of performances with special appearances at Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM), and with free performances in all five boroughs of New York City. Details and images were unveiled for special commemorative merchandise with partners such as Hallmark, Mattel, Movado, Chronicle Books and Target. Additionally, the Company shared plans for its annual New York City Center performances and U.S. tour that will include exciting collaborations with noted artists Wynton Marsalis and The Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra and Sweet Honey in the Rock.

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