Ailey 2 company carries an explosive amount of youthful vigour
American dance company set for King's Theatre, Glasgow
When Alvin Ailey died in 1989, he left behind an incredible legacy. Not only had he created a remarkable body of works, and a company – Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater – to perform them, but he had also looked to the future. As dancers mature and leave the company, somebody has to replace them, and if that somebody has already learned about the rigours of rehearsals and touring, so much the better.
Hence the reason that, in 1974, Ailey 2 was born. Populated by young dancers who have graduated from the Ailey School, the company is renowned for its powerful repertoire and athletic dancers. And now, finally, audiences on this side of the Atlantic can see for themselves, when Ailey 2 conducts its first ever UK tour.
With 12 dancers aged 17-23, Ailey 2 may be smaller than Ailey 1, but carries an explosive amount of youthful vigour. ‘I think one of the main qualities we have is an eager energy to learn and to share,’ says 22-year-old dancer, Fana Tesfagiorgis. ‘Whether that be with each other, with the company directors or with the audience. We have a tendency to want to give them everything, even in rehearsal.’
The company will be performing four diverse works and, just like the main company, will end the night with Ailey’s legendary Revelations – a special moment for all dancers in the company. ‘I remember watching Revelations when I was 10 years old and the company toured to my home town in Wisconsin,’ recalls Tesfagiorgis. ‘And now, performing it myself is unreal.’
King’s Theatre, Glasgow, Tue 22 & Wed 23 Feb