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Mission & Core Values

The mission of Alvin Ailey Dance Foundation is to further the pioneering vision of the choreographer, dancer, and cultural leader Alvin Ailey by building an extended cultural community which provides dance performances, training and education, and community programs for all people. This performing arts community plays a crucial social role, using the beauty and humanity of the African-American heritage and other cultures to unite people of all races, ages and backgrounds.

Mr. Ailey said, “I am trying to show the world we are all human beings, that color is not important, that what is important is the quality of our work, of a culture in which the young are not afraid to take chances and can hold onto their values and self-esteem, especially in the arts and in dance. That’s what it’s all about to me.” His words inform the organization’s core values:

Reaching Excellence – Innovation with Passion: Alvin Ailey’s ground-breaking legacy drives us to ever-greater heights of excellence, which we pursue with integrity, commitment, and creativity – now and into the future.

Moved to Inspire – Inspired to Move: Mr. Ailey taught us to “hold a mirror to society so that people can see how beautiful they are.” Our performances and education programs illuminate the human spirit, unlock potential, and spark change.

Build Community - Celebrate Diversity: The Ailey organization expresses itself through the universal language of dance, rooted in African-American tradition. On stage and off, we seek to bring together an inclusive community with no limitations.

Progress with Purpose - Perform with Respect: We connect through a common love of dance and treasure our heritage. We aim to be collaborative and nimble, while maintaining a cohesive and supportive work environment.

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