Philly dance great Rennie Harris is being lauded in New York for his latest work, Lazarus, the first two-act ballet ever choreographed for the Alvin Ailey company (in repertory at New York City Center though Dec. 20). New Yorker dance critic Joan Acocella calls it “a white-hot conjunction of emotion and intelligence.”
And it’s coming to Philly.
The Kimmel Center has announced that both acts of Lazarus will be danced here in two of Ailey’s three scheduled programs at the Academy of Music in the spring, at the 7:30 p.m. show on Friday, March 1, and at the matinee performance Saturday, March 2. Ailey’s masterpiece “Revelations” is also on both programs.
The third Academy of Music program, the evening of March 2, features “Revelations" and three other selections.
Lazarus chronicles Ailey’s life and the racism he faced, filtered through Harris’ trademark (and Philly-born) GQ style. It’s the final work of a Harris trilogy for the Ailey company, building on Exodus and Home.
The Inquirer and Daily News couldn’t connect on Tuesday with Harris, who announced late in the morning on his Instagram feed that he’s having surgery (a hip replacement) on Wednesday. But we’ll be talking with him soon about bringing the new work home. Stay tuned.
Harris’ company, Rennie Harris Puremovement, is scheduled to perform its program Funkedified at the Merriam Theater June 7 and 8.