Monday, 5 December 2011

Quote of the Week - Ailey

"In this business, life is one long fund-raising effort."

Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre has just opened its latest season in New York, with only its 3rd Artistic Director in an over 50-year history.  I think I was 7 when we went on a class field trip to see the Ailey company.  It was the first time I had been truly transported to another place by art.  In what has become a lifelong relationship with that choreography,  I have seen the company over 30 times,  taken classes with its dancers, and read both Judith Jamison's Dancing Spirit, and Mr. Ailey's, Revelations.   (Along with Martha Graham's Blood Memory, and Agnes De Mille's biography of Martha Graham, these are among the most profound books I have ever read.  I have yet to figure out the connection between these powerful dancer/choreographers and writing, but it is a visceral and vibrant one. )

That gaze alone could make you a better dancer.

As we have just passed World AIDS Day, it seems fitting to feature someone who was taken too soon from this disease.  As it is also officially the giving season, it seems alright with me to point out that artists, despite the instances of uber-wealthy celebrities, are often woefully underfunded.

Think about supporting an artist, a project, or an arts-related business in memory of the legacy of Alvin Ailey.  Maybe I'll even make you a list.

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