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KC Friends of Alvin Ailey Welcomes Ailey II Back to Kansas City! April 8 – 9, 2022 – Folly Theater

KANSAS CITY, MO – Kansas City Friends of Alvin Ailey (KCFAA) will present the modern dance company from New York City, Ailey II, in three exciting performances at the Folly Theater on April 8 – 9, 2022.

There will be two public performances: 7:30 p.m. on Friday, April 8, and 1:30 p.m. on Saturday, April 9. Ailey II will also be presented at 6:00 PM on Saturday, April 9 that KCFAA’s Annual Benefit Gala. The Gala performance will be followed by an elegant dinner and the best – dance – party – ever at the Kansas City Downtown Marriott. T – Mobile is the Gala presenting sponsor.

Ailey II is universally renowned for merging the spirit and energy of the country’s best young dance talent with the passion and creative vision of today’s most outstanding emerging choreographers.

Founded by Alvin Ailey, this professional dance company embodies his pioneering mission to establish an extended cultural community that provides dance performances, training, and community programs for all people.

With their new Artistic Director Francesca Harper at the helm, Ailey II has flourished into one of the most popular modern professional dance companies.

Trained at The Ailey School in New York City, Ms . Harper brings fresh perspectives to Mr. Ailey’s legacy during her inaugural season and shared, “It is a privilege to return to the home that shaped me as an artist to accept the honor of leading Ailey II into its next era.

Ailey II’s mission lies in generating space for human narratives expressed through the strength, grace, and versatility of the next generation of gifted young dancers. As exemplified in this year’s diverse repertory, I am looking forward to bringing in new choreographic voices and programming works that further an ongoing cultural dialogue and contribute to social transformation.”

The Annual Benefit Gala is KCFAA’s largest single fundraising initiative and a critical component of its budget. Proceeds from the Gala benefit KCFAA’s year-round education and youth development programs that teach children critical life skills through dance.

This year’s gala theme is “In Good Company” and is an opportunity for the community to reunite after the isolation of the pandemic.

“The KCFAA Gala has always been a fun evening to bring our diverse Kansas City community together to celebrate dance and the Arts,” said Melanie Miller, Chief Executive Officer.

“During our 2022 Gala, we especially want to emphasize the importance of coming together, ‘ in good company ’.”

The 2022 KCFAA Gala Leadership Team includes community leaders from Kansas City: Honorary Gala Co-Chairs

• Sharon & John Hoffman

• Drs. Evelyn & Roger C. Williams, Jr. Gala Event Co-Chairs

• Gina Hull

• Dr. Marjorie Williams

Community Leader Debby Ballard will be honored at the Gala as the recipient of the 2022 Janet K Miller Award. This prestigious award recognizes innovative leaders who have made significant contributions to the arts and youth development.

Debby is the former President of the Sprint Foundation and Founder and CEO of The Ballard Connection, which links highly qualified and diverse talent with business opportunities. She was a member of the Kansas City Friends of Alvin Ailey Board for many years where she held various roles, including Board President and Gala Co-Chair with Janet K. Miller in 20

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