By Angela Michael Medearis

Explores the dance traditions of African americans, from their origins within the expressive dances that the slaves introduced from Africa in the course of the improvement of jazz and faucet to fashionable dance and ballet.

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Extra resources for Dance (African-American Arts)

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Ailey's ballets are performed by many of the world's best dance companies including the American Ballet Theater, Joffrey Ballet, Paris Opera Ballet, La Scala Ballet, and Dance Theater of Harlem. The Ailey Camp, a dance school for children, was formed as a result of AADT's commitment to arts education programs. Ailey received numerous awards and wide recognition for his achievements. He died on December 1, 1989. Other dancers like Judith Jamison continue to carry on his commitment to African-American dance tradition.

The "cold water" Mitchell was referring to was the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr. The incident moved him so much that he founded a school called the Dance Theater of Harlem (DTH). The purpose of the school was "to promote interest in and teach young people the art of classical ballet, modern and ethnic dance, thereby creating a much needed self-awareness and better self-image of the students themselves," Mitchell said. Mitchell eventually wanted to develop a performing company made up of highly disciplined and technically trained dancers from the school.

An exercise of rhythmical exactness for two. There was no motion she made that he did not imitate.  . Author and poet Langston Hughes wrote about the Harlem dance scene in his book The Big Sea: The lindy-hoppers at the Savoy even began to practice acrobatic routines and to do absurd things for the entertainment of the whites, that probably never would have entered their heads to attempt merely for their own effortless amusement. Some of the lindy-hoppers had cards printed with their names on them and became dance professors teaching the tourists.

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