Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater review – mambo, tango and bluesy moves

Sadler’s Wells, London
In their second programme of dance, the US company present Ronald K Brown’s Open Door, Paul Taylor’s Piazzolla Caldera and their signature Revelations

What a versatile group the Alvin Ailey dancers are. Ronald K Brown’s Open Door begins with a lyrical, modern-jazz solo and keeps mixing in other styles as it goes along: west African torso rolls, musical theatre, lilting mambo and invented moves, such as a downward-drilling spin. It’s great material, but Brown is less expert at making something out of it. Although the music, by Arturo O’Farrill and the Afro Latin Jazz Orchestra, is vital and varied, too often the choreography settles into the pulse and resorts to formation patterns. Only the final mambo sparks into a more sparring engagement with its score and the stage space, and then the piece hits the spot.

Related: Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater review – bewildering speed and irresistible elan

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Source: Guardian Dance News

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