Program A

Jamar Roberts’ Members Don’t Get Weary

Chicago Premiere
Longtime Ailey dancer Jamar Roberts’ choreographic debut for the company, Members Don’t Get Weary, is a work for 10 dancers set to music by jazz legend John Coltrane, 50 years after his death. Roberts calls the work “a response to the current social landscape in America … an abstract look into the notion of one ‘having the blues.'”

Twyla Tharp’s The Golden Section

New Production
Tony Award-winner Twyla Tharp’s The Golden Section was presented as the grand finale of the Broadway production The Catherine Wheel in 1981. Two years later, The Golden Section became a stand-alone work, celebrated for its pure dance expression of blissful joy. The critically-acclaimed ballet, first performed by the Ailey company in 2006, pushes the limits of human physicality as Ailey dancers soar in Tharp’s daring, driving choreography with breathtaking leaps and finely-honed partnering, set to a new wave rock score by David Byrne.

Robert Battle’s In/Side

Robert Battle’s solo piece In/Side offers audiences an intimate look at a man’s most private struggles and features Battle’s signature bold, unrestrained style. The work is set to Nina Simone’s haunting rendition of the Oscar-­nominated song “Wild is the Wind.”

Alvin Ailey’s Revelations

Company founder Alvin Ailey’s signature work Revelations has consistently enraptured audiences all over the world with its perfect blend of reverent grace and spiritual elations, paying homage to and reflecting the cultural heritage of African Americans. Set to a suite of traditional spirituals, Revelations explores the emotional spectrum of the human condition, from the deepest of grief to the holiest joy. Revelations has been seen by more people around the world than any other modern work.

Program A will be performed on Wednesday, March 7 @ 7:30PMSaturday, March 10 @ 8PM; and Sunday, March 11 @ 3PM.

Program B

Talley Beatty’s Stack-Up

New Production
Inspired by Los Angeles’ urban landscape and the lives of its disparate inhabitants, Stack-Up depicts the emotional “traffic” in a community that is stacked on top of each other. Set to the background of a throbbing 1970s beat (with music by Earth, Wind & Fire; Grover Washington, Jr.; Fearless Four; and Alphonze Mouzon) and a graffiti landscape, patrons in a crowded disco dance with attitude, sass, and fierce despair in this classic work by Chicago-born choreographer Talley Beatty.

Gustavo Ramírez Sansano’s Victoria

Chicago Premiere
Spanish choreographer Gustavo Ramírez Sansano makes his choreographic debut with the Ailey company with Victoria. Spanish for “victory,” the work is a tribute to the triumph of good over evil and features Sansano’s signature whimsy, theatricality, and physicality. Sansano is known for his work with Nederlands Dans Theater, Compañia Nacional de Danza, Hubbard Street Dance Chicago, Ballet Hispánico, and Atlanta Ballet.

Robert Battle’s Ella

Originally created as a solo, this high-energy comical dance was reinvented as a duet by the Ailey company in December 2016 in anticipation of the legendary singer Ella Fitzgerald’s centennial in 2017. Using a live concert recording of Fitzgerald performing the song “Airmail Special,” Ella matches the iconic singer’s virtuosic scatting with lightning-fast, articulated movement in an irresistible tour-de-force that leaves audiences (and the dancers) breathless.

Alvin Ailey’s Revelations

Company founder Alvin Ailey’s signature work Revelations has consistently enraptured audiences all over the world with its perfect blend of reverent grace and spiritual elations, paying homage to and reflecting the cultural heritage of African Americans. Set to a suite of traditional spirituals, Revelations explores the emotional spectrum of the human condition, from the deepest of grief to the holiest joy. Revelations has been seen by more people around the world than any other modern work.

Program B will be performed on Thursday, March 8 @ 7:30PM and Saturday, March 10 @ 2PM

Program C

Robert Battle’s Mass

Ailey Artistic Director Robert Battle’s Mass features 16 dancers, showcasing Battle’s signature ritualistic choreography. “The genesis of this work came to me while seeing Verdi’s Requiem at Carnegie Hall,” Battle says. “I found myself utterly absorbed in the intricacies of how the choir moved as a unit and then organized and condensed themselves in the pews. The juxtaposition of the choir themselves constrained by space while their voices traveled through the hall was fascinating.” The work is set to a score by contemporary composer John Mackey, who previously collaborated with Battle on the 2015 piece Awakening.

Jawole Willa Jo Zollar’s Shelter

New Production
Shelter
, a passionate statement about the physical and emotional deprivation of homeless people, returns to the Ailey stage 25 years after first being performed by the company. Set to an inventive score which incorporates poetry by Hattie Gossett and Laurie Carlos, this dramatic work delivers the compelling message that the poverty of individuals will inevitably lead to the destitution of all humanity.

Robert Battle’s The Hunt

Set to a wildly percussive soundtrack by Les Tambours du Bronx, this ballet for six men examines the relationship between modern sports and the rituals of the gladiators. Costumed in long black skirts with under layers of red, the dancers throw themselves into a pre-hunt ritual, clawing at their gaping mouths as they stomp and pound with thunderous power revealing the robust side of human nature and the thrill of the hunt.

Alvin Ailey’s Cry

In 1971, Alvin Ailey choreographed Cry as a birthday present for his mother; it went on to become an enduring work of American art. This 16-minute solo, which was first danced by the legendary Judith Jamison, is dedicated to “all black women everywhere – especially our mothers.” The three-part solo represents all black women, depicting their African origins, the trials and tribulations they have endured, and their joyful triumphs over those hardships. Cry is set to music by Alice Coltrane, Laura Nyro, and the Voices of East Harlem.

Alvin Ailey’s Revelations

Company founder Alvin Ailey’s signature work Revelations has consistently enraptured audiences all over the world with its perfect blend of reverent grace and spiritual elations, paying homage to and reflecting the cultural heritage of African Americans. Set to a suite of traditional spirituals, Revelations explores the emotional spectrum of the human condition, from the deepest of grief to the holiest joy. Revelations has been seen by more people around the world than any other modern work.

Program C will be performed on Friday, March 9 @ 7:30PM.

Please note: dates, programs, and casting are subject to change.