Dance: Ailey II Announces 2017-2018 World Tour

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Dazzling flight. Photo: Kyle Froman

Ailey II kicks, the acclaimed 12-member ensemble kicks off a 32-city world tour this Saturday, September 16th, continuing through March 11th.

The tour includes more than two dozen cities across the U.S., including a stop in Atlanta as part of Ailey’s Destination Dance initiative, which uses dance as a centerpiece for engagement. Ailey II will also reach international audiences in France and Spain, and will return home for its annual New York season, taking place at the Ailey Citigroup Theater from March 14th – 25th.

Ailey II is universally renowned for merging the spirit and energy of the country's best young dance talent with the passion and creative vision of today's most outstanding emerging choreographers.

One of the most popular dance companies in the country, Ailey II combines a rigorous touring schedule with extensive community outreach programs. In his sixth year as Artistic Director, Troy Powell announces three diverse new commissions.

“I am thrilled to welcome remarkable new works by three talented rising choreographers into the repertory this season,” said Powell. “These world premieres – alongside a roster of returning favorites – will allow audiences far and wide to experience the power and versatility of these gifted young dancers.”

Jamaican-born choreographer Renee I. McDonald’s "Breaking Point" is an intense depiction of the fight for our heart’s desire. Whether it is love, friendship, forgiveness, or a secret longing – these things can take us to our limit.

Suitably paired with the bold and pulsating sounds of Audiomachine, McDonald’s high-powered, modern-based choreography captures the willpower and frenzy it takes to keep up “the fight” until you hit your breaking point.

Darrell Grand Moultrie’s "Road To One" passionately embraces the journey we all take to find meaning in our lives and eventually pass it on to the next generation. Inspired by a mentor who introduced him to the arts at a young age, Moultrie pays it forward with the Ailey II dancers, creating a high-energy ensemble work that uses elegant, modern movement with a contemporary edge. The musical score features an eclectic range of artists, including Ezio Bosso, Kinjey Bunchens, Monica Chuchi, Oliver Davis, and Spark.

Juel D. Lane’s Touch & Agree explores what it is to be in love and how we commit to another person without losing our own identity. To do this, Lane brings his personal experiences as a black gay man to the stage, using such wide-ranging musical sources as Sam Cooke, James Blake, H.E.R., and Byrell the Great.

The Atlanta native’s unique style fuses contemporary, African, and hip-hop – bringing a fresh choreographic perspective to the ups and downs of relationships today.

Lane’s Touch & Agree – among other ballets – will be performed on Saturday, October 21 at Atlanta’s Rialto Center for the Arts as part of Destination Dance, the Ailey organization’s initiative to collaborate with Atlanta’s arts and civic organizations through workshops, master classes, performances, special events, and more.

Ailey II will also perform a free concert at Woodruff Park as part of the ELEVATE festival on Friday, October 20th, in connection with Destination Dance. For more information on this exciting partnership, visit Destination.Dance.

In addition, six new dancers – Antuan Byers, Kyle H. Martin, Corrin Mitchell, Adrien Picaut, Arianna Salerno, and Marcus Williams – join the six returning members – Tara Bellardini, Khalia Campbell, Yazzmeen Laidler, Jessica Amber Pinkett, Martell Ruffin, and Christopher R. Wilson.

Along with the three world premieres, Ailey II’s touring repertory will include "Circular" by Jae Man Joo, "In & Out" by Jean Emile, "Sketches of Flames" by Bridget L. Moore, "Something Tangible" by Ray Mercer, "Virtues" by Amy Hall Garner, and works by members of the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater family – Gêmeos by Ailey star Jamar Roberts, Stream of Consciousness by former Ailey dancer Marcus Willis, The Hunt and Takademe by Ailey Artistic Director Robert Battle, and Revelations – the must-see masterpiece by Alvin Ailey himself.

For more information on the tour, visit alvinailey.org.

Destination Dance Ailey Atlanta is sponsored by Georgia Power, The Home Depot Foundation,
Georgia-Pacific, The Atlanta Journal Constitution, and Boston Consulting Group.

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