OPENING WEEK DANCE PHOTOS
It’s opening week at Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival, and I couldn’t be happier. Photographing Dance Theatre of Harlem in the Ted Shawn Theatre has been a delight. It’s exciting that the Pillow is one of the first places Dance Theatre of Harlem is performing now that the company has made its triumphant return to the dance world.
It’s a great show, too.
Lindsey Pitts, Jenelle Figgins and Emiko Flanagan of Dance Theatre of Harlem in The Lark Ascending by Alvin Ailey
PHOTOGRAPHING THE BEAUTIFUL DANCE THEATRE OF HARLEM
Arthur Mitchell, founder of Dance Theatre of Harlem, started the company so many years ago. He was the first African American to dance with New York City Ballet and most famously performed in Agon by George Balanchine (created for him and ballerina Diana Adams).
Gabrielle Salvatto and Frederick Davis of Dance Theatre of Harlem dancing Balanchine’s Agon at Jacob’s Pillow
This summer, Dance Theatre of Harlem, now under the direction of the incredible Virginia Johnson, is performing Agon, and in a way, you can’t help but picture him dancing in it. To me, it feels like a wonderful tribute to him.
Gabrielle Salvatto and Frederick Davis of Dance Theatre of Harlem dancing The Lark Ascending
The company is also performing The Lark Ascending by Alvin Ailey, and the dance fits their bodies so well. They really dance it beautifully.
VIRGINIA JOHNSON & WENDY WHELAN TEACH BALLET CLASS
Virginia Johnson teaching ballet at The School at Jacob’s Pillow
Over at The School at Jacob’s Pillow, the ballet students are having some legendary classes. Dance Theatre of Harlem’s Virginia Johnson and New York City Ballet’s Wendy Whelan taught class this week, and I had the great honor of watching them in action. Incredible.
Wendy Whelan with the ballet students
MORE #PILLOWPEOPLE DANCE FESTIVAL PHOTOS
We’re continuing our Pillow People photos, of course. Search #pillowpeople on Facebook & Instagram for photo stories of our wonderful patrons and their memories of seeing dance at the festival. Come visit me this summer, tell me your Pillow memories and I’ll make your portrait!
Frances Jones Snead & Marlina Willis came to the Pillow for the African American Heritage tour to learn more about the Pillow’s history with the Underground Railroad. Can’t remember when their first Pillow visit was, but Marlina’s brother used to dance with Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater so she came here many times to see him dance with the company and take workshops. #pillowpeople
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