Alvin Ailey Golden Anniversary Celebration

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The Friday, April 24 performance is an event of the PALL Dance series sponsored by Pall Corporation, the principal sponsor of dance at Tilles Center. Radio Station WFUV is the media partner for the April 24 performance.

[Entertainment: Dance]

Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, one of the world’s most esteemed dance ensembles, presents “Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater at 50: A Golden Anniversary Celebration,” an exciting, fast-paced tour through some of the company’s best-known works, at Tilles Center for the Performing Arts on Friday, April 24 at 8 pm and Saturday, April 25, at 3 and 8 pm.

The Friday, April 24 performance is an event of the PALL Dance series sponsored by Pall Corporation, the principal sponsor of dance at Tilles Center. Radio Station WFUV is the media partner for the April 24 performance. The 3 pm performance on April 25 is a full-length presentation for families and children.

Under the guidance of Artistic Director Judith Jamison and Associate Artistic Director Masazumi Chaya, the company presents an all-Ailey retrospective that reflects the company’s artistic goals and achievements over the half century since its founding.

The first act includes dances from the 50s and 70s. Gems like Blues Suite (1958), Night Creature (1974) and Cry (1971) are excerpted and performed in rapid succession. The second act presents masterpieces of the 80s, among them Phases  (1980), Caverna Magica (1986) and For “Bird” — With Love (1984), danced to music by Charlie Parker, Dizzy Gillespie, Count Basie and Jerome Kern. The third act is entirely devoted to Alvin Ailey’s signature work — the magnificent, spiritually thrilling Revelations (1960).

Founded in 1958, the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater forever changed perceptions of American dance. From the time the company presented its first performances at New York City’s 92nd Street Y, it has been devoted to creating links between the unique black cultural experience and mainstream modern dance.

Ailey, a native of Texas whose inspirations as a dancer and choreographer were as diverse as the Katherine Dunham Company and the Ballet Russe, created 79 ballets for his company but he did not envision the company as an exclusive repository of his work. He presented works by other choreographers; in all the company has performed more than 170 works by 63 choreographers.

Judith Jamison, the muse upon whom Ailey created many of his most dramatic dances, became artistic director of the company in 1989. The compelling solo, Cry, is among the roles Ailey created for her. Jamison starred in the hit Broadway musical Sophisticated Ladies. As a choreographer, Jamison’s many works include Hymn, a tribute to Alvin Ailey; Sweet Release, a collaboration with trumpeter Wynton Marsalis; and Here…Now, commissioned for the 2002 Cultural Olympiad. Doubleday published her autobiography, Dancing Spirit, in 1993.

Tilles Center has enjoyed a particularly close artistic and educational collaboration with the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater. Since 1983 and through the current season the company has presented 44 performances at Tilles Center. The tradition of every-other-season appearances began in 1988.

Tilles Center is presenting a Performance Plus! event in conjunction with Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater’s April 24  performance. A company member presents a talk at 6:45 pm in Hillwood Recital Hall. Only concert ticket holders are eligible to purchase tickets for Performance PLUS! Tickets are $5 each. They are available by telephone at (516) 299-3100, by fax at (516) 299-3817, in person at Tilles Center’s box office or by mail to Tilles Center Box Office; P.O. Box 570; C.W. Post Campus; Greenvale, NY 11548-0570.

Tickets for Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, at Tilles Center on Friday, April 24 at 8 pm and Saturday, April 25 at 8 pm, are $90, $70 and $50 (seniors: $87, $67, $47). Tickets for the 3 pm performance on Saturday, April 25 are $75, $60 and $40 (seniors: $72, $57, $37).

Tickets are available online at Ticketmaster.com or tillescenter.org, in person at Tilles Center’s box office or by telephone at (516) 299-3100 or (212) 307-4100. The box office is open Monday-Saturday 1-6 pm. All tickets are subject to a $1.50 facility fee. There is a service charge for telephone and Internet orders. There are no refunds or exchanges. For additional information, call (516) 299-3100 or visit tillescenter.org.

Tilles Center for the Performing Arts is located on the C.W. Post Campus of Long Island University, 720 Northern Boulevard (Route 25A) in Brookville.


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