Ailey II Poetic Motion Performance & Free Dance Class

By 4/02/2023 01:46:00 PM

Do you know about Ailey II, the second company to Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater?

Ailey II at The Ailey Citigroup Theater & Free Dance Classes

Note: I received tickets for review purposes. Views expressed are always 100% my own.

I attended a performance while they were at The Ailey Citigroup Theater, March 22- April 2, and was impressed by their mix of modern styles with some classic Ailey "feels".

I saw the Ailey II "Poetic Motion" and while one performance had me side eyeing the mini twerk, the other performances gave me thrills with the movements and visual storytelling.

Overall Ailey II offered various styles that broads the experience for audiences looking for something modern and semi experimental, but still within the Alvin Ailey American Dance family.

Poetic Motion Performance


Like Alvin Ailey before him, Robert Battle takes inspiration from his church background in this dance of rebirth that parallels the new life Ailey II is embarking on in its next era.

In Alleluia, Battle seamlessly meshes the foot stomping and hand gestures of the Baptist Church with classical Baroque idioms, setting seven dancers robed in white in a sustained burst of motion that builds to an ecstatic finale.


In the world premiere work mediAcation, former Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater member Elizabeth Roxas-Dobrish explores relationships and the nuances of communication. Six dancers use ropes and move in synch, creating intricate twists and beautiful lines before breaking away into three duets.

Coupled with music by various artists, including Nicholas Britell and Alberto Iglesias, Roxas-Dobrish aims to capture the angst of a social media construct while also revealing the intense need to connect.

The Lark Ascending

The Lark Ascending (excerpt) is a lyric and romantic dance choreographed in 1972 by Alvin Ailey to music by Ralph Vaughan Williams’s Romance for Violin and Orchestra. In his work, Mr. Ailey seamlessly fuses ballet and modern vocabularies in ways that display the technical abilities of the dancers in both disciplines.

The strength, and lyricism, and quality of lightness of the dancers’ movement have entranced audiences for years, making The Lark Ascending an enduring and important work in Mr. Ailey’s repertory.

Enemy in the Figure

Enemy in the Figure (excerpt) is the intensely propulsive central section of William Forsythe’s eponymous work. Originally created in Germany (1989) for his ensemble, Ballet Frankfurt, the full work has been performed in major venues across the globe.

Thom Willem’s percussive and rhythmically driving electronic score was the source of the works choreographic invention and influenced the radical use of light and shadow in the original stage design.

This excerpt puts the formidable dance skills of the Ailey II dancers on fine display, giving their craft and vitality an invigorating framework.

Ailey II at The Ailey Citigroup Theater

All programs are approximately 90 minutes, including two intermissions

The gifted ensemble of rising stars treated audiences to two dynamic programs, Poetic Motion and Empowered, spotlighting works by founder Alvin Ailey, Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater Artistic Director Robert Battle, William Forsythe, Francesca Harper, Andrea Miller, and former Ailey Company member Elizabeth Roxas-Dobrish.

Poetic Motion:
Alleluia/ The Lark Ascending/ MediAcation / Enemy in the Figure

Psūkhe / Enemy in the Figure / Freedom Series

Founded in 1974 as a bridge between The Ailey School and the professional dance world, the company embodies Alvin Ailey’s pioneering mission to establish an extended cultural community that provides dance performances, training, and community programs for all people.

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Dance FREE at Ailey Extension

Let Ailey II’s performances inspire you to get moving this spring for FREE in one of Ailey Extension’s “real classes for real people.”

Ailey’s Ticket to Dance promotion gives new and returning students a chance to trade their performance ticket for a complimentary dance or fitness class of their choice.

With over 50 classes a week available in-studio and online in a wide variety of techniques such as hip-hop, ballet, West African, NY Style Mambo, Pilates, and Horton—the signature technique seen in many of Alvin Ailey’s classic works—Ailey Extension makes dance accessible to people of all ages, backgrounds, and experience levels.

Ticket holders for Ailey II’s 2023 New York engagement have until July 31, 2023 to take advantage of this exclusive offer.

To view the schedule of classes, visit -

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