LOS ANGELES (February 4, 2020)—Glorya Kaufman Presents Dance at The Music Center (Dance at The Music Center), programmed by TMC Arts, marks the return performances by Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater at The Music Center’s Dorothy Chandler Pavilion from March 18–22, 2020.
The engagement features three independent programs: Program A (New Works) includes Aszure Barton’s BUSK andthe West Coast premiere of Jamar Roberts’ acclaimed new work, Ode; Program B (Trailblazers) features Lazarus, a two-act work by Rennie Harris that received its riveting West Coast premiere at The Music Center in April 2019; and Program C (Family Friendly) includes the West Coast premiere of Darrell Grand Moultrie’s Ounce of Faith as well as Jessica Lang’s EN, with a special opportunity for local audiences to see Los Angeles native Matthew Rushing perform again before he transitions full time into his new role as Ailey’s associate artistic director; Rushing, a Music Center Spotlight finalist has danced with Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater since 1992. Each of the three programs ends with Alvin Ailey’s seminal masterpiece Revelations, an homage to the rich African-American cultural tradition that explores the emotional spectrum of struggle and salvation, grief and joy.
Performing for more than six decades, Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater continues to celebrate the human spirit with programs that highlight the beauty and humanity of African-American heritage and other cultures, while uniting people of all races, ages and backgrounds. Under the leadership of its visionary Artistic Director Robert Battle, the company continues to honor the legacy of its founder, while stewarding the next generation of choreographers.
“Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater’s contribution to American culture is beyond measure,” said Rachel S. Moore, president and CEO of The Music Center. “Angelenos clamor to experience the innovative, passionate performances that are the company’s hallmark. By using dance to communicate and mirror some of our deepest emotions, Ailey offers vital perspectives on social justice issues that challenge humanity and reflect the times we live in. Yet, at the same time, the company’s work uplifts our souls and gives audiences reasons to jump out of their seats and dance in the aisles.”
Ailey company member and Resident Choreographer Jamar Roberts offers a healing meditation on the beauty and fragility of life in a time of growing gun violence. Ode, which will have its West Coast premiere at The Music Center, is Roberts’ second Ailey commission. Set to a Jazz score—Don Pullen’s Suite (Sweet) Malcolm (Part 1 Memories and Gunshots)—and using Roberts’ own costume designs, Ode is a poetic tribute to victims and addresses a tough issue through the lens of love. Ode runs 17 minutes and features six dancers with set design by Libby Stadstad and lighting by Brandon Stirling Baker. (Program A)
Also making its West Coast debut at The Music Center is Ounce of Faith, an exuberant work by Darrell Grand Moultrie that depicts the lasting impact of a teacher’s influence on a young child. Using a mix of Jazz standards by Wynton Marsalis and Yacub Addy, and Aisha Jackson and Dante Hawkins, original music by Chuck Harmony and spoken word by the choreographer, Ounce of Faith explores the notion that “when someone has an ounce of faith in you, it can change the course of your life.” Anchoring a family-friendly program with uplifting messaging, Ounce of Faith has a run time of 29 minutes and showcases costumes by Mark Eric and lighting by Mark Stanley. (Program C)
Choreographed by Bessie and Arison awards-winner Jessica Lang, EN is a celebratory ensemble work that introduces an original, electronic score by composer Jakub Ciupinski. EN reflects on the universal experience of coming full circle and communicates the passage of time through the use of light and movement. The piece takes inspiration from the Japanese character, “En,” which represents the multiple meanings of circle, destiny, fate or karma. Acclaimed dancer Matthew Rushing, who began his dance career in his hometown of Los Angeles, will perform in this piece, making a rare appearance at The Music Center; the 30-year Ailey veteran became rehearsal director in June 2010 before assuming his current role of Ailey Associate artistic director of the company in January 2020. The 21-minute work features costumes by Bradon McDonald and lighting by Nicole Pearce with set design by Lang and Pearce. (Program C)
In BUSK, internationally renowned choreographer Aszure Barton illustrates the fragility, tenderness and resilience that exist within the human experience. Set to a spirited score, BUSK has been described as watching the physical unfurling of the human psyche. Under Barton’s direction, the dancers must tap into the collective—a hive mind—to execute the choreographer’s layered and intricate structures, which then give way to the nuance of each individual. With costumes by Michelle Jank and lighting/set design by Nicole Pearce, BUSK runs 20 minutes. (Program A)
With Lazarus, renowned Hip-Hop choreographer Rennie Harris connects past and present in a powerful work that addresses the racial inequities America faced when Alvin Ailey founded his company in 1958, and still today. The company’s first two-act work, Lazarus is an ensemble piece with a soundtrack that melds Nina Simone, Terrence Trent D’Arby, Michael Kiwanuka, Odetta, original music by Darrin Ross and the voice of Alvin Ailey. The hour-long piece, divided in two sections separated by an intermission, was inspired by the life and times of Alvin Ailey and features lighting by James Clotfelter and costumes by Mark Eric. (Program B)
An original masterpiece choreographed by Alvin Ailey, Revelations uses African-American spirituals, song-sermons, gospel songs and holy blues ranging from the emotional “I Been ’Buked,” to the rousing “Wade in the Water” and the triumphant finale “Rocka My Soul in the Bosom of Abraham.” The 36-minute piece is a Los Angeles favorite and has been one of the most widely-seen modern dances works in the world since its 1960 debut. Revelations showcases décor and costumes by Ves Harper and costumes for the “Rocka My Soul” section redesigned by Barbara Forbes, and lighting by Nicola Cernovitch. (All programs)
Tickets for Ailey Revealed performances at The Music Center start at $34 and are available online at https://www.musiccenter.org/ailey; at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion Box Office, 135 N. Grand Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90012; or by calling (213) 972-0711. For groups of 10 or more, call (213) 972-8555 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Each program runs approximately two hours, including two 20-minute intermissions. Programs and artists subject to change.
One hour prior to selected performances, The Music Center will host a pre-curtain discussion with dancers from the Ailey company. These facilitated conversations provide ways for Ailey audiences to enjoy and further understand context for what they’re about to see from social, historical and choreography perspectives.
As part of its commitment to deepening the cultural lives of Angelenos, The Music Center will host two programs for Los Angeles County students to experience the American modern dance tradition of Alvin Ailey. Between March 2–6, 2020, TMC Artswill present an Ailey Residency at both Humphreys Avenue and Rowan Avenue elementary schools in the Los Angeles Unified School District. Led by Nasha Thomas, national director of Ailey Camp, local 5th grade students will explore the rich themes and choreography of Revelations. The students will “perform” the choreography on the final day of the residency in class in front of classmates, friends and family. TMC Arts will also bring these students, as well as students from throughout Los Angeles County in Grades 3–8, to a free performance featuring Once of Faith and Revelations by the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater on Thursday, March 19, 2020, at The Music Center’s Dorothy Chandler Pavilion. Prior to the performance, teachers from the attending schools will participate in an orientation session and receive study guides designed to prepare students for the experience.
Bank of America is a Supporting Sponsor of The Music Center and Ailey’s National Tour Sponsor.
The 2019–2020 season of Glorya Kaufman Presents Dance at The Music Center continues with Tanztheater Wuppertal Pina Bausch with Palermo Palermo (April 17–19, 2020); Malpaso Dance Company (May 15–17, 2020); and concludes with The Music Center debut performances of Teatro alla Scala Ballet Company with Giselle (July 24–26, 2020). For tickets and information, call (213) 972-0711 or visit musiccenter.org.
Photos available in The Music Center Press Gallery. Visit AlvinAiley.org for company information.
Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater
March 18–22, 2020
The Music Center’s Dorothy Chandler Pavilion
Program A (New Works)
BUSK, Ode (West Coast premiere) and Revelations
Wednesday, March 18, 2020, 7:30 p.m.
Friday, March 20, 2020, 7:30 p.m.
Sunday, March 22, 2020, 7:30 p.m.
Program B (Trailblazers)
Lazarus and Revelations
Thursday, March 19, 2020, 7:30 p.m.
Program C (Family Friendly)
Ounce of Faith (West Coast premiere), EN and Revelations
Saturday, March 21, 2020, 2:00 p.m.
Saturday, March 21, 2020, 7:30 p.m.
Sunday, March 22, 2020, 2:00 p.m.
About Glorya Kaufman Presents Dance at The Music Center
Glorya Kaufman Presents Dance at The Music Center, a program of The Music Center Arts (TMC Arts), is one of the leading presenters of dance on the West Coast. The celebrated series offers significant works by prestigious ballet and contemporary dance artists from around the world. Now in its 17th year, Dance at The Music Center is a powerful commissioning force, supporting new works and artists-in-residence projects by today’s most influential companies and choreographers. Performances take place throughout The Music Center, including the historic Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, the distinctive Ahmanson Theatre and the iconic Walt Disney Concert Hall, and in locations around the Los Angeles area.
About The Music Center
The Music Center convenes artists, communities and ideas with the goal of deepening the cultural lives of every resident in Los Angeles County. The non-profit performing arts organization has two divisions: The Music Center Arts (TMC Arts) and The Music Center Operations (TMC Ops). TMC Arts, The Music Center’s programming engine, provides year-round programming inside The Music Center’s four theatres, on The Music Center Plaza, outside at Grand Park—a 12-acre adjacent green space—and in schools and other locations all over Los Angeles County. TMC Arts presents world-class dance with Glorya Kaufman Presents Dance at The Music Center, free and low-cost public concerts and events, as well as K–12 arts education programs. TMC Ops manages the theatres, the Plaza and Grand Park on behalf of the County of Los Angeles. The Music Center is also home to four renowned resident companies—Center Theatre Group, Los Angeles Master Chorale, LA Opera and LA Phil. For more information, visit musiccenter.org. Follow The Music Center on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter @MusicCenterLA.
About Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater
About 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 March 1958 performance in New York that changed forever the perception of American dance. Founded by Alvin Ailey, recent posthumous recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom – the nation’s highest civilian honor, and guided by Judith Jamison beginning in 1989, the Company is now led by Robert Battle, whom Judith Jamison chose to succeed her on July 1, 2011. Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater has performed for an estimated 25 million people in 71 countries on 6 continents—as well as millions more through television broadcasts, film screenings, and online platforms—promoting the uniqueness of the African‐American cultural experience and the preservation and enrichment of the American modern dance tradition. In addition to being the Principal Dance Company of New York City Center, where its performances have become a year‐end tradition, the Ailey company performs annually at Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, DC, the Auditorium Theatre in Chicago, the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts of Miami‐Dade County in Miami, The Fox Theatre in Atlanta, Zellerbach Hall in Berkeley, CA and at the New Jersey Performing Arts Center in Newark where it is the Principal Resident Affiliate), and appears frequently in other major theaters throughout the United States and the world during extensive yearly tours. The Ailey organization also includes Ailey II (1974), a second performing company of emerging young dancers and innovative choreographers; The Ailey School (1969), one of the most extensive dance training programs in the world; Ailey Arts in Education & Community Programs, which brings dance into the classrooms, communities and lives of people of all ages; and The Ailey Extension (2005), a program offering dance and fitness classes to the general public, which began with the opening of Ailey’s permanent home—the largest building dedicated to dance in New York City, the dance capital of the world—named The Joan Weill Center for Dance, at 55th Street at 9th Avenue in New York City. For more information, visit www.alvinailey.org.