7/2/20 O&A NYC DIVO ALERT: Faison, Godreau and Williams- Road of the Pheobe Snow

Divo Alert! George Faison, Miguel Godreau and Dudley Williams dance in an excerpt from Talley Beatty’s The Road Of The Pheobe Snow with the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater. Continue reading

5/31/20 O&A NYC TRIBUTE: A Song For You (1986) Dudley Williams August 18, 1938- May 31, 2015

By Walter Rutledge

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In 2003 I called Ailey Dancer Emeritus Dudley Williams at that time he was a 39 year veteran of the Ailey Company, one year from a forty year milestone as an Ailey dancer. The Bearden Foundation and The Nanette Bearden Contemporary Dance Theater were planning a centennial celebration for renowned artist Romare Bearden. The dance company would present a new work On The Block based on the six panel mural by Bearden, which is in the permanent collection at the New York Metropolitan Museum of Art. 

I introduced myself and explained the projected; we wanted him to play an abusive husband opposite Hope Clark. I finished the introduction with “I have called you the Lyric Crown Prince of modern dance but in this work I’m going to need you to be a real son of a bitch”. He paused then quickly responded “I can do that”. This began a working relationship and friendship that would last until his death. I still miss Dudley’s dry wit and even drier Bombay Blue Sapphire Martini. I know that you are still dancing this solo probably with Alvin directing and Donny singing. Continue reading

5/15/20 O&A NYC SHALL WE DANCE FRIDAY: Alvin Ailey’s For ‘Bird’ – With Love (1984)- Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater

A tribute to the great jazz musician Charlie “Bird” Parker, For ‘Bird’ – With Love brings the audience back to the relaxed atmosphere of an after-hours jam session at a local jazz club. Continue reading

1/3/20 O&A NYC SHALL WE DANCE FRIDAY: Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater- Revelations


Alvin Ailey’s masterwork Revelations (1960), one of the most recognizable modern dance works, remains a powerful testament to the human spirit. This cast includes Marilyn Banks, April Berry, Kevin Brown, Gary DeLoatch, Ralph Glenmore, Deborah Manning, Renee Robinson and Dudley Williams. 

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12/18/18 O&A NYC DANCE: Linda Celeste Sims- Pure Light( originally posted 12/3/15)

By Walter Rutledge

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Outstanding performers have always been the hallmark of the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater. Dancers that consistently test the technical and artistic boundaries of modern dance remain a fundamental part of founder Alvin Ailey’s continuing legacy. Artists Carmen DeLavalallade, Dudley Williams, Judith Jamison, Miguel Godreau, Linda Kent, Sara Yarborough, Sarita Allen, Gary deLoatch, Desmond Richardson, and Renee Robinson all possessed an innate ability beyond technique, a God given gift that unfortunately cannot be taught. When the stage lights hit these special individuals it is refracted into dazing, flawless, pure light that pulls you in… moth to flame. Celeste Linda Sims is pure light. Continue reading

12/28/17 O&A NYC: THROWBACK THURSDAY: I Wanna Be Ready (1986)


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In a long, brilliant career, Dudley Williams worked with such artists as Martha Graham, Talley Beatty, and Donald McKayle. Most significantly, he was a member of the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater for more than forty years. He will be forever linked to his interpretation of the solo I Wanna Be Ready from Alvin Ailey’s masterwork Revelations.

 “[Dudley Williams is] amazing—an inspiration to everybody, a real poet with movement.” –Alvin Ailey from Revelations: The Autobiography of Alvin Ailey.

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6/6/20 O&A NYC TRIBUTE: Loretta Abbott March 1, 19( I ain’t tellin)- May 6, 2016

By Walter Rutledge

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Loretta Abbott, dancer, actress, singer and choreographer passed away on Sunday June 5, 2016. A natural performer Abbott had two passions: her love for dance that spanned over 70 years, and her allegiance to the Harlem community where she lived her entire life. Continue reading

6/16/17 O&A NYC SHALL WE DANCE FRIDAY: Dudley Williams last Performance- Dance Of The Village Elders

By Walter Rutledge

Dudley Williams was a performing artist, and teacher and a friend. I often referred to him as the “Lyric Prince of Modern Dance” a moniker that he enjoyed. In reality Dudley was a fighter. And the bantamweight dancer was in a battle with time, he simply refused to let it stop him from dancing. Continue reading

4/28/17 (REPOST) O&A NYC SHALL WE DANCE FRIDAY: Three Black Kings- An Ailey Classic

By Walter Rutledge

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Three Black Kings was the last dance and music collaboration between choreographer Alvin Ailey and composer/musician Duke Ellington.  Continue reading

12/29/17 (REPOST) O&A NYC SHALL WE DANCE FRIDAY: A Conversation With Dudley Williams Moderated By Jennifer Dunning (Part One)

On Thursday October 23, 2014 Dance critic and author Jennifer Dunning talked with Dudley Williams about his career that spans almost six decades. Clack Center NYC hosted A Conversation with Dudley Williams at the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts Bruno Walter Auditorium, 40 Lincoln Center Plaza at 6pm.. Williams was frank, funny and informative, discussing a wide range of his experiences with some of the world’s most renowned choreographers. 

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