Dance Performances - Night Creature

About Night Creature


Alvin Ailey’s Night Creature is a bubbly champagne cocktail of a dance, a perfect fusion of Ailey’s buoyant choreography and Duke Ellington’s sparkling music.  At once wistful and sassy, it beckons viewers into a nocturnal world populated by jazz babies and night owls.

Ellington said that “night creatures, unlike stars, do not come OUT at night­– they come ON, each thinking that, before the night is out, he or she will be the star.” This large ensemble work is full of such stars — strutting, leaping and slinking through a variety of dance idioms as they flaunt and flirt with each other and the audience. They hold their hands like paws, as if they’re cats on the prowl, then slide seamlessly into balletic allegro jumps, Martha Graham-like contractions and Lester Horton layouts. It’s the definitive dance homage to the exuberance of The Duke’s sophisticated symphonic work.

This production was made possible, in part, by a grant from Ford Foundation and with public funds from the National Endowment for the Arts.

Performance Schedule & Tickets

Mar 27

Mar 28

Jul 14

Jul 18

Jul 22

Jul 24

Jul 30

Sep 4

Sep 5

Sep 6

Sep 10

Sep 12

Sep 13

Sep 16

Sep 18

Sep 19

Sep 20



Duke Ellington (“Night Creature”)


Original costumes by Jane Greenwood; Revival costumes by Barbara Forbes; Fabric dyeing by Elissa Tatigikis Iberti


Chenault Spence

First Performance

Created in 1974 (for a TV special – 'Ailey Celebrates Ellington') and then premiered on Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater in May 1975.

Run Time

17 minutes

Musical Style

Groups 10+

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