3/20/09

Alvin Ailey...

Wednesday night I celebrated my birthday downtown watching the opening night performance of the 50th anniversary celebration of the Alvin Ailey Dance Theater, and boy was it SPECTACULAR.

There was a documentary about the history of the company and Mr. Ailey, featuring the his protege and now head of the company, the amazing Judith Jameson. It talked about the new Ailey Dance center that is open in NYC and how it is continuing Alvin's dream of bringing dance to the people, with it's summer camps and training programs and drop in classes for the public. It was amazing. And there was a special piece just for the opening with Sweet Honey and The Rock, an outstanding soulful all female a capella group, that also sings all it's songs for the hearing impaired...a George Faison choreographed number set entirely to the works of Otis Redding...and of course the piece de resistance...Revelations, which had a ten minute standing ovation. Magnificent.

There is something so powerful and profound about dance. Dance moves me in an entirely unique way. There is the story, the music, the sheer physical will and grace and strength of the dancer as they fly though space, carving out a narrative that is not just intellectual but emotional, physical, primal. I am often moved to tears and always, always, inspired. I leave with a renewed belief that anything is possible, that magic is real and I want to be a better artist, to work harder, to create, to move people in the very way that those remarkable men and women move me... with out ever using a single word to do so.

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