Walter’s World: Weekend Picks- Harlem Celebrates Kwanzaa and Dancing into 2012

By Walter Rutledge

2012 is just days away, and 2011 is literally dancing into the sunset. Here are a few of the events taking place in Harlem and around the city that will help usher in the new year.

Kwanzaa Celebration- Regeneration Night at the Apollo Theater located at 253 West 125th Street Tickets: $16 per person 
In person at the Apollo Theater Box Office
 By phone call Ticketmaster (800) 745-3000
 Online at Ticketmaster.comGroup Tickets of 5 or more: $14

On Friday, December 30 at 7:30 p.m. the Apollo Theater continues a new Kwanzaa tradition with its 5th annual Regeneration Night celebration on Friday, December 30th. Hosted by WBLS personality Imhotep Gary Byrd, the Apollo’s Kwanzaa Celebration will feature the 20-member dance and drum company Forces of Nature Dance Theatre, which will perform two of its signature dance pieces, Nguzo Saba and Terrestrial Wombs, and present the premiere of a new work, Padnahs, all choreographed by Artistic Director Abdel R. Salaam. This year marks the company’s 30th anniversary. The program will also include special musical guest Craig Harris and Tailgaters Tales, a jazz trombonist and composer who has been a major figure in the jazz avant-garde movement. Other performers will include musicians Michael Wimberly and Yacuba Sissko, and young dancers from the Harlem Children’s Zone/Forces of Nature Youth Academy.

Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre will culminate the highly successful five-week season at The New York City Center on Sunday January 1, 2012. Tickets start at $25 can be purchased online at AlvinAiley.org or NYCityCenter.org, by telephone 212- 581- 1212 and at the box office. Performances include:

Friday, December 30, 8pm: Anointed (Huggins), Home (Harris), Revelations (Ailey)

Saturday, December 31, 2pm: Minus 16 (Naharin), Night Creature (Ailey), In/Side (Battle), Love Stories (Jamison, Battle, Harris)

Saturday, December 31, 7pm: Arden Court (Taylor), Home (Harris), Revelations (Ailey)

Sunday, January 1, 7:30pm: Special Program including Revelations (Ailey)

In Photo: 1&2) Forces of Nature Dance Theatre 3) Alicia Graf Mack

Photo by: 3) Andrew Eccles