Camille A. Brown, the socially conscious dancer and choreographer, is this year’s winner of the Jacob’s Pillow Dance Award, an honor that comes with a $25,000 cash prize and an engagement at the summer festival.
She was chosen by the incoming Jacob’s Pillow Director Pamela Tatge, who takes over on April 18. In an interview, she called Ms. Brown “hugely important,” and lauded her offstage work advocating for black female artists. “Someone who generates dialogue in communities is the kind of artist that really excites me,” Ms. Tatge said. She added that Ms. Brown is a “deep researcher” who tackles social issues through “extremely present, theatrical” choreography.
As part of the award, Ms. Brown will have a creative development residency at Jacob’s Pillow, where she will spend one or two weeks shaping her new work, “ink.” In addition, her dance “Black Girl: Linguistic Play,” which received favorable reviews when it appeared at the Joyce Theater in September, will be staged at Jacob’s Pillow in 2017. “When I started creating this work, I wanted there to be a duality, a culturally specific work with universal themes,” Ms. Brown said in a statement, referring to “Black Girl.” “This work speaks to the human condition, and because of that, I hope people are able to see themselves in the work, regardless of race or gender.”
Ms. Brown, who won a Bessie award for her 2014 work “Mr. TOL E. RAncE,” began dancing with Ronald K. Brown’s company in 2001. She also appeared with other troupes before founding Camille A. Brown & Dancers several years ago.
The Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater has been amazing audiences around the world since 1958. However, even after almost 60 years in business, it is still breaking ground as a modern dance company.
On Thursday, Oct. 22, Ailey will be debuting its first-ever feature film as part of the Lincoln Center at the Movies series, Great American Dance. In movie theaters nationwide, audiences will have the chance to watch the Ailey company perform some of its most classic, popular pieces like “Revelations,” “Takademe” choreographed by Robert Battle and “Grace” by Ronald K. Brown.
Hosted by Kelly Ripa and Michael Strahan, the film will also feature behind-the-scenes footage from shows and exclusive interviews with members of the company.
Considering that this is a one-night only affair, this event is the opportunity of a lifetime. The Ailey company is critically acclaimed for its brilliant choreography and innovative scores featuring some of the most loved and revered musicians in Black music including Duke Ellington, Roy Davis and Fela Kuti. The entire show is performed to African-American spirituals, song-sermons, gospel songs and holy blues.
Interested? Check local listings (the show starts at 7 pm local time) here or here and check out the trailer below:
NEW YORK (AP) — When Robert Battle first arrived at New York’s Lincoln Center years ago, he was a dance student with a scholarship to Juilliard. On his first day, he walked up to the building he thought was the school. It turned out to be the Metropolitan Opera House.
This past week, Battle arrived at Lincoln Center in a far different capacity — as artistic director of Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, one of the most-loved dance companies in the world. He was bringing the company to its first engagement at Lincoln Center — one of the premier dance addresses in the world — in 13 years.
“This time I’m pretty sure I’m in the right place,” Battle, always ready with a smile and a quip, told the opening-night audience Wednesday at the David H. Koch Theater. “I saw my name on the poster outside.”
Battle, appointed two years ago, has the tricky job of projecting the gravitas needed to follow his famous predecessor, Judith Jamison, who held the job for more than two decades and carved a place in dance history, and at the same time injecting fresh life into the company, via new works and ideas.