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Copy of Judith Jamison

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Kelly Birchall

on 3 March 2017

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Transcript of Copy of Judith Jamison

Judith Jamison
Deslie + Dorcas

Born on the 10th of May in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

1949: Age 6
Began her dance training at Judimar School of Dance.
She studied with Marion Cuyjet who became one of her early mentors. Under his guidance she studied classical ballet and modern dance.

1951: Age eight
She began dancing on pointe and started taking classes in tap dancing, acrobatics, and Dunham technique.
A few years later, Cuyjet began to send her to other teachers to advance her dance education.
She learned the Cechetti method from Anthony Tudor, founder of the Philadelphia Ballet Guild.
Throughout high school, Jamison was a member of numerous sports organizations, the Glee Club, and the Philadelphia String Ensemble.
She studied Dalcroze Eurhythmics; a system that teaches rhythm through movement.

Dance Training
1960: Age seventeen
She graduated from Judimar and began her university studies at Fisk University
There she studied with James Jamieson, Nadia Chilkovsky, and Yuri Gottschalk.
In addition to her technique classes, she took courses in Labanotation, Kinesiology, and other dance studies.
During this time, she also learned the Horton technique from Joan Kerr, which required great strength, balance, and concentration.

1964: Age twenty-one
She stared attending the Philadelphia Dance Academy, training in Dance and Music.
She was invited by Agnes DeMille to New York to perform the American Ballet Theatre.

1965: Age twenty-two
She joined the Alvin Ailey Dance Theater Company

1980: Age thirty-seven
She left the Alvin Ailey Dance Theater Company , to perform in the Broadway musical ‘Sophisticated Ladies’. she formed her own dance company the jamison project she rejoining Ailey dance theater in 1989 taking over as artistic director over the next 21 years she took the company to unprecedented heights including a 50 city tour celebrating the 50 years anniversary.
Among Us (Private Spaces: Public Places) 2009
Choreographer: Judith Jamison
Divining 1984
Choreographer: Judith Jamison
Double Exposure 2000
Choreographer: Judith Jamison
Echo: Far From Home
Choreographer: Judith Jamison
Forgotten Time 1989
Choreographer: Judith Jamison
HERE...NOW. 2001
Choreographer: Judith Jamison
Hymn 1993
Choreographer: Judith Jamison
Love Stories 2004
Choreographer: Judith Jamison with Robert Battle and Rennie Harris
Reminiscin' 2004
Choreographer: Judith Jamison
Riverside 1995
Choreographer: Judith Jamison
Rift 1991
Choreographer: Judith Jamison
Sweet Release 1996
Choreographer: Judith Jamison

Hymn 1993
Judith Jamison’s stunning, Emmy Award-winning 1993 tribute to Alvin Ailey uses explosive, full company dances and quiet solos to illuminate Ailey’s humanity and the dancers’ unique qualities. Narrative recollections from dancers are arranged by the multi-talented actor/playwright Anna Deavere Smith.

Hymn is a unique collaboration between two highly acclaimed talents from the worlds of dance and theater paying homage to Alvin Ailey. In this stirring tribute, using text derived from interviews with the entire company and Ailey’s own words, the dancers create a love letter to Mr. Ailey. Words and dancing illuminate each other and in episodic form the audience is taken on a moving journey of Ailey’s incredible contribution to dance and humanity.

Jamison style :Still showed elements of the ballet style. The choreography included the whole of the company but within the piece there were solo's. This was to illuminate Ailey characteristics. The use of solo's also conveys Jamisons stylistic qualities, for Ailey would often create solo's for Jamison in his works. Moreover, movement from Aileys work of Revelations was also used in Hymn as it was a work of art dedicated to Ailey, years after his death. The music for Hymn also reflects Jamison's stylistic features, consisting of African drumming. This reflects upon Jamison's cultural background but also her rhythmic style that influence Jamison in her youth, as she learnt to play instruments.

Jamison described dance as the "past, future and present" and the use of modern technology to create the voice over of Ailey in the accompaniment, shows how Jamison is modernizing the company.The use of more staccato movement is also a new change to the company's work, this also shows how Jamison is modernizing the movement.

Jamison's Dance Style
Elegant and "silky " in the way the dancers perform
Balletic style is consistent throughout her choreographic work
Musical – broadway - shown in the execution of expressive skills
Modern dance - using traditional African dance style
Tall in the size
Long – limbed
Defined actions - every shaped delicately made in a graceful way
Repetitively described as organic.
Main themes are to celebrate Ailey's legacy and remember the historical and social context of the dance companies beginnings
Critics Reviews
Jamison's choreography drew both praise and criticism in the 1980s and 1990s. In 1985 Dance Magazine called her "first foray into choreography, Divining, a deceptively simple exercise in strong, grounded movement to a live percussion score…

Justt dance review stated: A fusion of traditional African motifs with the repetitive, simplified focus of post-modern dance, the work has more to it than meets the eye."

At the opposite pole, New York magazine termed it "a flimsy affair," adding, "The piece doesn't go on anywhere near long enough to build the hypnotic power it lays claim to."

When the premiere of Jamison's 1989 work Forgotten Time was performed at New York's Joyce Theater, Jack Anderson wrote in the New York Times, "Ms. Jamison was at her choreographic best…. The work, for her full company, was notable for the beauty of its groupings and for the way it appeared to take place in some mysterious, transcendent realm."

However, he added that Jamison was "not always able to organize [her sequences] into choreographic structures" and suggested that "judicious editing would make some of her works even more striking than they now are."

• Youngest person ever to receive The Dance USA Award (1998)

• New York State Governor’s Arts Award (1998)

• Kennedy Center Honors for her contribution to American culture through dance (1999)

• A prime time Emmy Award and an American Choreography Award for her work on the
PBS Documentary “A Hymn for Alvin Ailey” (1999)

• National Medal of Arts (2001)

• Honored by the National Theater of Ghana (2002)

• The Paul Robeson Award from the Actors’ Equity Association (2004)

• Bessie Award for her commitment to development in dance and the arts (2007)

• The BET Honors Award – a tribute to the achievement of leading African Americans (2009)

• Listed in the TIME 100: The World’s Most Influential People (2009)

• Congressional Black Caucus’ Phoenix Award (2010)

• The Handel Medallion (2010)

Hymn continued
The accompaniment is a constant driving rhythm with the use of percussion. The relationship show moments of direct correlation and mutual co- existence. in addition
call and response is used relating back to the african roots.

Costumes are tight Lycra in the colors of red, orange and pinks connoting the idea that the bright colors are used to reflect the idea of a celebration. later on in the dance the costume changes to brown tight fitted leotards for the girls and shorts for the boys being skin colors reflect the idea of their heritage and the historical context behind it.

Their is a large number dancers on the stage all together; the actions are a collaboration of the keys movements for the dance based on Lester Horton's technique. The dynamics are controlled with sharp moments and smooth graceful highlights with key movements
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