Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, America’s beloved cultural ambassador to the world, completes its coast-to-coast North American tour at the New Jersey Performing Arts Center (NJPAC) Friday-Sunday, May 6-8, 2022. Ailey’s extraordinary dancers will move audiences in a program celebrating Artistic Director Robert Battle’s 10th anniversary, along with a diverse repertory of premieres, timeless favorites, and Ailey’s must-see American masterpiece Revelations. This marks the 23rd time Ailey graces the NJPAC stage; the last performance was in 2019 due to the 2020-21 pandemic shutdown. (Please scroll down for the complete schedule and program.)
 
“Alvin Ailey’s vision opened the door for generations of artists to use dance to inspire, unite, and enlighten,”stated Artistic Director Robert Battle. “Despite the twists and turns on the road we have all traveled together, it is exciting to be returning to our Newark home while finding new ways to share artistry that renews our spirit of courage, hope, and joy. I am deeply humbled to have led this seminal Company for a decade, joined by incomparable dancers and choreographers on a journey of discovery that extends from the powerful works of our founder to the important voices of today—an ongoing dance dialogue that shines a light on the strength and resilience of our common humanity around the world.”
 
The NJPAC homecoming engagement opens on Friday, May 6th at 8:00 p.m. with a Battle 10thAnniversary program celebrating Artistic Director Robert Battle’s visionary leadership over the past 10 years that has moved the Company forward in exciting ways into a seventh decade. Robert Battle’s featured works are the New Jersey premiere of For Four, which captures the pent-up energy of a world cooped up during the pandemic set to a Wynton Marsalis jazz score written in 4/4 time, along with a new production of Robert Battle’s sensuous, swirling duet Unfold, evoking the tenderness and ecstasy in Gustave Charpentier’s aria “Depuis Le Jour” sung by the incomparable Leontyne Price.  Signature works will be performed like EllaIn/SideLove Stories finale, Mass, and Takademe.  Battle 10th Anniversary program repeats on the Sunday, May 8th at 3:00 p.m. matinee on Mother’s Day.
 
The program on Saturday, May 7th at 8:00 p.m. features two New Jersey Premieres – Aszure Barton’s BUSK and Ailey Resident Choreographer Jamar Roberts’ Holding Space, translated from film to the stage this season.  Holding Space examines the ways in which we can collectively accommodate one another to better traverse this new and unprecedented terrain. In BUSK, internationally renowned choreographer Aszure Barton invites us to enjoy 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. 
 
The uplifting finale of all performances is Alvin Ailey’s American masterpiece Revelationscreated in 1960,which has inspired generations through its powerful storytelling and soul-stirring spirituals. Since its debut in 1960, Revelations has been seen by more people than any other modern dance work and has moved audiences through its powerful storytelling and soul-stirring music, evoking timeless themes of determination, hope, and transcendence. Springing from Ailey’s childhood memories of growing up in the south and attending services at Mount Olive Baptist Church in Texas, Revelations pays homage to the rich cultural heritage of the African-American and explores the emotional spectrum of the human condition.

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