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Alvin Ailey at the Kennedy Center 2019

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I managed to overcome illness and competition for tickets to attend 2 out of the 3 programs that the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre presented at the Kennedy Center for their 2019 visit. I felt that this was their strongest effort in the (admittedly few) years that I've seen them dance. 

The highlight of their visit was the DC premier of a piece by Rennie Harris titled Lazarus. This work was supposed to be about Alvin Ailey and was created for the 60th year of the company. It turned out to not strictly be a biographical sketch but rather a series of vignettes that captured the essence of what Ailey would have experienced in his life. The work had about the widest variety of tempos of any dance work that I've ever seen - Harris has a thing for "slow motion" movements but this work (much more than the previous effort of his that I watched: Earth Tribe, created for the Colorado Ballet) contained some very fast sequences. The work was billed as the first 2 act dance work created for the Ailey company, and is definitely different than any other dance piece that I've watched. I'm confident that it will enter their main repertory, so that hopefully more people will get to see it.

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