[Theatre]: A Memorable Night with the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre

On Friday night I had the privilege of seeing the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater at the Artscape Opera House. As expected, the show was a once in a lifetime spectacular.


The work of this world-class modern dance company is the stuff of legend, and the opening performance of "Night Creature" demonstrated why. Akua Noni Parker led the company in telling a story about a mischievous group of forest dwellers. No words were spoken, and even the music had no lyrics, yet the piece gave the audience a chance to imagine what fun and mayhem ensue in the forest after nightfall.

For the second piece, Linda Celeste Sims and Glenn Allen Sims gave a moving performance of Christopher Wheeldon's "After the Rain Pas de Deux". It is always fascinating to watch a pas de deux: the tightly synchronised movement, as well as the trust and intimacy between the dancers makes each one a thing of beauty.

Paul Kolnik

I believe the highlight of the show was Rennie Harris's "Exodus". It was a vibrant and energetic performance which incorporated what looked like pantsula dance and even the nae nae. (When a professional dance company does the nae nae, it just looks so much cooler.) My reaction to "Exodus" was borderline visceral: that's how much the music and the incredible skill of the dancers affected me.

Exodus by Rennie Harris from Alvin Ailey on Vimeo

The final piece for the night was Alvin Ailey's renowned orginial work, "Revelations". Set to traditional spiritual music, each part built the excitement  of the audience to a crescendo. As I had done with "Exodus", I found myself wanting to stand up and dance along.

I left the Artscape feeling like I had just witnessed some type of magic. The show was both uplifting and awe-inspiring.