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June 3, 2015
PRESS RELEASE June 2, 2015
For Immediate Release
There’ll be dancing in the streets – or at least on Library Green – this Saturday, June 6th as the New Rochelle Council on the Arts presents a very special “Arts Encounter”, a free one-hour “Revelations Celebration” dance class featuring former Alvin Ailey principle dancer Donna Wood Sanders teaching excerpts from Alvin Ailey’s masterpiece “Revelations.” The pop-up dance class is part of NRCA’s year-long series of “Arts Encounters,” created to celebrate the group’s 40th anniversary by bringing the arts to people as they go about their every day routines. “The idea is to remind everybody how the arts enrich our daily lives with a series of unexpected pop up performances in public spaces all around New Rochelle,” explains NRCA President Theresa Kump Leghorn. For more information about NRCA visit www.newrochellearts.org or follow NRCA on Twitter @NewRochelleArts.
A member of the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater for nearly a decade, Donna Wood became internationally recognized as a significant interpreter of dramatic dance roles: The New York Times praised her as “not only a versatile dancer but a sensitive artist capable of both lyricism and a dramatic intensity.”
Whatever your dance ability don’t miss this opportunity to explore movement with a master!
About Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater
The Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater was founded in 1958 by dancer, choreographer and visionary Alvin Ailey, to bring African-American cultural expression and the American modern dance tradition to the world. Since then it has performed for an estimated 25 million people at theaters in 48 states and 71 countries on six continents – and has reached millions more online and through television broadcasts. When Mr. Ailey began creating dances, he drew upon his "blood memories" of Texas, the blues, spirituals, and gospel as inspiration, which resulted in the creation of his most popular and critically acclaimed work, Revelations. Although he created 79 ballets over his lifetime, Mr. Ailey maintained that his company was not exclusively a repository for his own work; in all, more than 235 works by over 90 choreographers have been part of the Ailey company’s repertory.
About Donna Wood Sanders
Born in New York City and raised in Dayton, Ohio, Donna Wood began studying dance with the Dayton Contemporary Dance Company at the age of five. She trained extensively in ballet under Josephine Schwartz of the Dayton Ballet.
Wood joined the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater in September, 1972; five years later, she became a leading dancer with the company, noted for her lyrical musicality, supple extensions, and strong, graceful jumps. Wood also guest-starred with the Hamburg Ballet, the Vienna State Opera, and the Royal Danish Ballet. In 1985 she left the Ailey company, and took a two-year faculty appointment at CalArts of Valencia, Calif. In 1987 she starred in a production of "Sophisticated Ladies," which toured the Soviet Union and Japan.
In 1990 Wood retired from performing and married attorney Peter Michael Sanders. They live in New Rochelle with their two children. In 2013 she came out of retirement to join other former Ailey dancers in a New Year’s Eve performance of “Revelations.”
PHOTO: Donna Wood in “Cry”, photographed by Jack Vartoogian
About the New Rochelle Council on the Arts
The New Rochelle Council on the Arts was created by the New Rochelle City Council in 1975 to stimulate and encourage the study and presentation of the performing and fine arts; for 40 years NRCA has worked to fulfill that mission by sponsoring art exhibitions, theatrical productions, dance recitals, film screenings, lectures, and concert series. In addition, NRCA has sponsored public art -- like the popular Fleur-de-Lis sculptures downtown -- and created ArtsFest, while helping to build relationships between the arts, the business community and city government.
The NRCA website www.newrochellearts.org has become major resource for artists and art lovers – the “go-to” place for information about the arts. Membership in NRCA is open to artists and non-artists alike, with members receiving special discounts and invitations to networking events and studio tours. For more information visit NRCA on the web at www.newrochellearts.org.
NRCA’s programs are made possible, in part, by ArtsWestchester with funds from Westchester County Government, the City of New Rochelle, and the support and participation of NRCA’s membership.