mobile logo

Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater Kicks Off Black History Month at The Kimmel Center with Powerful and Relevant Premieres, February 3-4, 2017

For a PDF version of this press release, please click here

Tweet it! 

Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater kicks off #BlackHistoryMonth at @KimmelCenter with world-class program 2/3-4, including “Revelations”


Press Contact:

Amanda Conte



Programs Feature Works Connected to the African American Experience

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE (Philadelphia, PA, January 17, 2017) –– Internationally-acclaimed dance company Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater returns to the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts February 3 and 4, 2017 at the Merriam Theater, for a weekend of inspirational performances including new works and long-standing favorites, launching a 19-city North American tour.

The performances, taking place at the start of Black History Month, will feature works that explore the African American experience and social justice; including the Philadelphia Premiere of company member and former PHILADANCO dancer Hope Boykin’s r-Evolution, Dream., inspired by the speeches and sermons of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. with new music by Ali Jackson (of Jazz at Lincoln Center), and historic and original writings recorded by Tony Award winner Leslie Odom, Jr. (of Hamilton). The program will also feature the three-part work Untitled America by MacArthur Genius Kyle Abraham about the impact of the prison system on African American families. The inspiring finale of all performances will be Alvin Ailey’s must-see American masterpiece Revelations.

“It is truly an honor for Philadelphia and the Kimmel Center to be the city and venue that launch this tour for such a prestigious company,” said Anne Ewers, President & CEO of the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts.  “This program blends works old and new that share similar stories and themes; it showcases just how powerful a storyteller dance can be, transcending time and cultural divides.”

The Philadelphia program will also feature Exodus, a powerful work by acclaimed Philadelphia-based hip-hop choreographer Rennie Harris; Awakening, Artistic Director Robert Battle’s first world premiere since becoming Artistic Director; and After the Rain by Tony winner Christopher Wheeldon.

Other upcoming dance performances on the Kimmel Center Campus include Balé Folclórico da Bahia (February 17, 2017, Merriam Theater), Shaping Sound After the Curtain (March 7, 2017, Merriam Theater), and PHILADANCO (April 13–15, 2017, Perelman Theater).


Merriam Theater

February 3, 2017, 8:00 p.m.

r-Evolution, Dream.

Untitled America


February 4, 2017, 3:00 p.m.



After the Rain


February 4, 2017, 8:00 p.m.

r-Evolution, Dream.

Untitled America



Tickets are available now and start at $26.00. Tickets can be purchased by calling 215-893-1999, online at, or at the Kimmel Center Box Office. Group sales are available for groups of 10 or more and can be purchased by calling (215) 790-5883. More information at

The Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts

Located in the heart of Center City, Philadelphia, the Kimmel Center’s mission is to operate a world-class performing arts center that engages and serves a broad audience through diverse programming, arts education, and community outreach. The Kimmel Center Campus is comprised of the Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts (Verizon Hall, Perelman Theater, SEI Innovation Studio, and the Merck Arts Education Center), the Academy of Music (owned by the Philadelphia Orchestra Association), and the Merriam Theater. The Kimmel Center is also home to eight Resident Companies: The Philadelphia Orchestra, Opera Philadelphia, The Pennsylvania Ballet, The Philly POPS, PHILADANCO, The Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia, The Philadelphia Chamber Music Society and Curtis Institute of Music. With nearly 9,000 seats per night, The Kimmel Center for the Performing Arts is the region’s most impactful performing arts center, and the second largest in the country. TD Bank, America’s Most Convenient Bank, is the season sponsor of the Kimmel Center’s 2016-2017 Season. American Airlines is the official airline of Broadway Philadelphia. For additional information, visit


Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, recognized by U.S. Congressional resolution as a vital American “Cultural Ambassador to the World,” grew from a now‐fabled March 1958 performance in New York that changed forever the perception of American dance. Founded by Alvin Ailey, recent posthumous recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom – the nation’s highest civilian honor, and guided by Judith Jamison beginning in 1989, the Company is now led by Robert Battle, whom Judith Jamison chose to succeed her on July 1, 2011. Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater has performed for an estimated 25 million people in 71 countries on 6 continents – as well as millions more through television broadcasts, film screenings, and online platforms - promoting the uniqueness of the African‐American cultural experience and the preservation and enrichment of the American modern dance tradition. In addition to being the Principal Dance Company of New York City Center, where its performances have become a year‐end tradition, the Ailey company performs annually at Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, DC, the Auditorium Theatre in Chicago, the Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts of Miami‐Dade County in Miami, The Fox Theatre in Atlanta, Zellerbach Hall in Berkeley, CA and at the New Jersey Performing Arts Center in Newark  where it is the Principal Resident Affiliate), and appears frequently in other major theaters throughout the United States and the world during extensive yearly tours. The Ailey organization also includes Ailey II (1974), a second performing company of emerging young dancers and innovative choreographers; The Ailey School (1969), one of the most extensive dance training programs in the world; Ailey Arts in Education & Community Programs, which brings dance into the classrooms, communities and lives of people of all ages; and The Ailey Extension (2005), a program offering dance and fitness classes to the general public, which began with the opening of Ailey’s permanent home—the largest building dedicated to dance in New York City, the dance capital of the world —named The Joan Weill Center for Dance, at 55th Street at 9th Avenue in New York City.  For more information, visit

# # #

For photography, please visit

For a PDF version of this press release, please click here