By Walter Rutledge
Ailey II will begin their 2012 New York spring season on Wednesday April 18 at the Ailey Citigroup Theater in the Joan Weill Center for Dance located at 405 West 55th Street (at 9th Ave). The company will present two programs entitled Modern Moves and Contemporary Choices respectively for a total of fourteen performances. The two-week season, which runs through Sunday April 29, will offer three new works and three repertory favorites.
The three New York Premieres include Artistic Director Designate Troy Powell’s Reference Point, Boulevard by South Korean choreographer Mina Yoo and The Legacy of Inheritance by Stephanie Batten Bland. Each choreographer brings their own unique challenges to the dancers and perceptive for the audience. Returning works include Shards by Donald Byrd, Echoes by Vietnamese born choreographer Thang Dao and break out artist Kyle Abraham’s The Corner.
Troy Powell has created a work that has the ability to rouse the audience as an opener and bring them to their feet as a closer. This ensemble work is broken into five sections featuring a variety of movement that is energetic and powerful, yet also subtle and vulnerable. Reference Point references the vast movement experiences Powell has encountered throughout his career as a dancer, teacher, choreographer and director combining ballet, jazz, and contemporary dance. The work is set to an original score by Mio Morales.
Boulevard by former Ailey II company member Mina Yoo (technically she was a member of the 1976 Alvin Ailey Repertory Ensemble) depicts a familiar neighborhood on an inner city boulevard.The work reflects the many eclectic and diverse enclaves of New York City, where young people of various cultures and backgrounds interact. The work was originally choreographed for Yoo’s Seoul, Korea based company for nine male performers; it has been redesigned especially for Ailey II for six male and three female performers. Boulevard is set to the percussive sounds of Michel Macias, Hugues Le Bars, René Aubry, and Greetje Bijma.
Paired with music by Zoe Keating and Stars of the Lid, Stefanie Batten Bland’s The Legacy of Inheritance fuses European and American dance esthetics. Her individual and distinctive style is a combination of striped down modern dance and theatrically powerful imagery. The result is a contemplative synergy of the exploration of bodies in motion and the omnipotence of nature.
Modern Moves will present dance works Echoes, Boulevard and Reference Point. The Contemporary Choices will present The Corner, The Legacy of Inheritance and Shards. The Ailey ll 2012 season schedule is:
Week 1: Wednesday April 18- Sunday April 22
Wednesday, April 18, 2012 at 8pm – Modern Moves
Thursday, April 19, 2012 at 8pm – Contemporary Choices
Friday, April 20, 2012 at 8pm – Modern Moves
Saturday, April 21, 2012 at 3pm – Contemporary Choices
Saturday, April 21, 2012 at 8pm – Modern Moves
Sunday, April 22, 2012 at 3pm – Modern Moves
Sunday, April 22, 2012 at 7pm – Contemporary Choices
Week 2: Wednesday April 25- Sunday April 29
Wednesday, April 25, 2012 8pm – Contemporary Choices
Thursday, April 26, 2012 8pm – Modern Moves
Friday, April 27, 2012 8pm – Contemporary Choices
Saturday, April 28, 2012 3pm – Modern Moves
Saturday, April 28, 2012 8pm – Contemporary Choices
Sunday, April 29, 2012 3pm – Modern Moves
Sunday, April 29, 2012 7pm – Modern Moves
The Ailey Citigroup Theater is an intimate 275-seat proscenium venue with excellent sight lines throughout. The venue size, and company popularity usually results in a sold out series. We suggest you get your ticket as soon as possible. Tickets can be purchased at the box office located at the Joan Weill Center for Dance and online. For more information, box office hours and to purchase tickets online, visit http://www.alvinailey.org, http://www.ovationtix.com or call 866-811-4111.
In photo: 1) Reference Point cast 2) Echoes cast 3) Major Nesby, Slim Mello, Thomas Varvaro in Boulevard 4) Brittany Engel-Adams and Collin Heyward in Shards
Eduardo Patino Photographer