By Walter Rutledge
This weekend its beginning to feel a lot like Christmas. We have dance in Midtown, theatre and a search for new talent in Harlem, and a literary happening on the Upper Westside. Here are a few of the many arts related events taking place around town and in our community.
The Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater continues their 55th season and the 42nd consecutive year at New York City Center, 131 West 55th Street, between 6th and 7th Avenues. The five-week seasonwill present the world premiere of Lift by Aszure Barton, the company premiere of British choreographer Wayne McGregor’s Chroma, Ronald K. Brown’s Four Corners and Bill T. Jones’ groundbreaking D-Man in the Waters (Part I). New productions of Alvin Ailey’s The River and Pas de Duke set to music by Duke Ellington will be presented with returning favorites Ronald K. Brown’s Grace, Jiří Kylián’s Petite Mort, From Before by Garth Fagan, Ohad Naharin’s Minus 16, Paul Taylor’s Arden Court, Kyle Abraham’s Another Night, and Rennie Harris’ Home.
On Tuesday, December 17th a special program celebrating Ailey guest artist Matthew Rushing will feature excerpts of Pas de Duke, Home, Grace, Revelations and A Song for You. Performances are scheduled Tuesday through Sunday, and the season runs through January 5, 2014. Tickets can be purchased at the New York City Center Box Office, through CityTix® at (212) 581-1212 or online at www.alvinailey.org or www.nycitycenter.org.
The Notorious E. B. Scrooge a new musical adaptation of the Charles Dickens classic A Christmas Carol will be presented at the Faison Firehouse Theater, 6 Hancock Place, West 124th Street between St. Nicholas and Morningside Ave. Performances are offered on selected dates through December 22. Tickets are $ 25.00 advance purchase, $ 35 day of performance. To order tickets and for information including a complete performance schedule call the Faison Firehouse 212-665-7716 or 347 210-8679. Tickets can also be ordered email at firstname.lastname@example.org
The musical is the tale of Hip Hop mogul, The Notorious E.B. Scrooge and his spiraling decent into the evils of the 21st Century. His humanity and compassion were replaced by his craving for power, fame and “bling”, until he learns the true meaning of Christmas. The sixteen-member cast includes featured performers Stephanie Berry, Daniel Carlton, Ebon Charles, Rah Digga, Jasmine Thomas, Charles Wallace, members of the Firehouse Respect Project and the George Faison Universal Dance Experience. Conceived by Tony Award winner George Faison the production is collaboration between Faison, Hip Hop artist Rah Digga and poet Ebon Charles.
Amateur Night At The Apollo: Holiday Special on Saturday, December 14, at 7:30pm is an annual event that is a highlight of the Apollo Theater’s 2013-14 season. Rapper, actor and host of BET’s 106 & Park, Bow Wow, is the special guest host. Prior to the Apollo Amateur Night Holiday Special Coca-Cola in partnership with the Apollo will offer the Coca-Cola Winter Wonderland from 2p to 6pm.
Coca-Cola Winter Wonderland is a free event is open to the public and will include a variety of holiday-themed activities and performances by Refining Faith and Acapella Soul under the Apollo’s iconic marquee. Festivities will include picture taking with Santa Claus, giveaways and performances by some of New York City’s best choirs. The Apollo will also host an onsite toy drive.
Tickets: $20, $26, $32 and can be purchased in person at the Apollo Theater Box Office, by phone call Ticketmaster (800) 745-3000 and online at Ticketmaster.com. Groups and families of 5 or more get 50% off the regular price.
Noted dance critic and editor Wendy Perron will read excerpts from her new book Through the Eyes of a Dancer on Saturday, Dec. 14 at 6:00 pm Broadway at the Upper West Side Barnes & Noble, 82nd Street and Broadway. The book compiles pieces for The SoHo Weekly News, Village Voice, The New York Times, and Dance Magazine. Perron limns the larger aesthetic and theoretical shifts in the dance world since the 1960s. She surveys a wide range of styles and genres, from downtown experimental performance to ballets at the Metropolitan Opera House. In opinion pieces, interviews, reviews, brief memoirs, blog posts, and contemplations on the choreographic process, she gives readers an up-close, personalized look at dancing as an art form.
As always thank you for letting me share my world with you.
In Photo: 1) Linda Celeste Sims 2) Matthew Rushing 3) Rah Digga 4) Apollo 5) Bow Wow
Photo Credit: 1&2) Paul Koknik 3) Courtesy Faison Firehouse Theater 4&5) Courtesy Apollo Theater