Alvin Ailey group sets dance camp for 11- to 13-year-olds


Thirty city school children will get a broad introduction to dance as well as a chance to develop their social skills during a two-week Alvin Ailey Mini-Camp that begins today at Morgan State University.

The kids, ages 11-13, were selected from 10 city middle schools and Project Raise -- a mentoring program for disadvantaged youth -- and represent a cross-section of backgrounds, according to the Alvin Ailey Dance Theatre Foundation of Maryland. The foundation is sponsoring the camp as part of the Maryland residency by the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre.

The cost of the camp, which is free to participants, is about $30,000, said Marsha Reeves, director of marketing and programs for the foundation. That represents about 5 percent of the budget for the Ailey residency, which, in its first year, has included performances by the main company, the junior troupe and the outreach programs in schools throughout the state.

Classes in ballet, jazz and modern dance will be taught by two former Ailey dancers who teach at the company's school. A specialist in the city school's Gifted and Talented Program will instruct the students in personal development.

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