"Blues Suite" Masterclass with Donna Wood
Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater
Blues Suite with Donna Wood – Sunday December 6 at 2pm
Often considered Alvin Ailey’s first masterpiece, Blues Suite premiered during the Company’s first performance in 1958, and will be seen this season in a new production performed with live music. "Blood memories" of rural, Depression-era southern Texas, come to life in the work, which portrays a cast of vividly-drawn characters from the barrelhouses and fields of Mr. Ailey's southern childhood, who dance and revel through one long, sultry night. The work poignantly evokes the sorrow, humor and humanity of the blues, those heartfelt songs that he called “hymns to the secular regions of the soul.” This open level class will offer an in-depth study of the history and creative heritage of Mr. Ailey, and students will learn the significance of the Horton technique within Ailey movement.
The Blues Suite master class will be taught by Donna Wood, who was selected by Mr. Ailey to join the company in 1972. During her 13 years with the Company she became an international dance star of her time and graced the cover of People magazine. Highly regarded for her lyrical musicality supple extensions, and dramatic intensity, she originated the lead role in Alvin Ailey’s Memoria and became a renowned interpreter of his tour-de-force solo Cry, which she is restaging on a new generation of soloists for the Company’s New York City Center season.
[Photo by Paul Kolnik]