Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre


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Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre, 17-18-19 September 2008

Lütfi Kırdar Congress and Convention Centre

As part of its 50th Anniversary Tour, Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, one of the best-known dance groups of modern dance, came to Istanbul for three special performances with the sponsorship of HSBC. The shows organized by IKSV on September 17, 18 and 19 were held at Lutfi Kirdar Congress and Convention Centre.

Istanbulite art lovers has shown great interest to the dance group which was formed by a group of African-American modern dancers under the leadership of Alvin Ailey and has changed the perception of American dance starting with their first performance. Up until now, the group has performed to 21 million people in 71 countries.

Bringing together classical ballet, modern, jazz and ethnic dance in his choreographies, Alvin Ailey, created more than 79 choreographies until the end of his life in 1989 since his first choreography "Blue Suite" that was put on stage in New York in 1958. Based on his own personal biography, Alvin Ailey created his choreography "Revelations" in which he brought together modern dance and gospels. When it was first produced in 1960 the choreography became very popular, and since then it has been put on stage every year and for about 300 times. Alvin Ailey quit dancing in 1965 and since that time, he has only focused to his choreography and managing his troupe. He founded Alvin Ailey American Dance Center and with Pearl Land, American Dance Center in Manhattan in order to give everyone access to dance education. In 1982 he received a United Nations Peace Medal. After the death of Alvin Ailey in 1989, choreographer Judith Jamison was named as the artistic director of the group and since then, the associate artistic director is Masazumi Chaya.

The group, which came to Turkey only in 1977 for the 5. Istanbul Festival, is widely-known as one of the most highly appreciated international cultural ambassadors of the USA.