In 1968, current AADE Artistic Director Chuck Davis founded the Chuck Davis Dance Company, which rapidly became one of the foremost Afro-American dance experiences in the United States. When the company was received at the American Dance Festival for the first time in 1980, they became an instant hit with audiences who found themselves caught up in the exuberance of the pulsating choreography, intoxicating music, and vibrancy of the performers.
After this first festival, the company renamed itself the African American Dance Ensemble, expanding on Davis’ original artistic expression. Composed of local dancers, the Ensemble debuted in 1984 with a premiere of Davis’ Saturday Night, Sunday Morning and Drought.
The byline of the company is “peace, love, respect for everybody,” and it is impossible to attend an AADE performance without leaving with these sensations in your soul. Davis’ work stands as a conduit for social change and positive human values through the spirit of dance and music, and he accomplishes this with every choreographic and musical stroke. With pulsing rhythms and rousing movement that is rooted in African traditional dance, AADE has continued through the years to rouse spectators with their exploration into the human condition and their sheer zest for life. (MK)
African American Dance Ensemble Information
- Public Transportation: Varies by venue
- Handicapped Accessibility: Depends on venue, but generally good
- Performances/Programs: About 100 performances (including educational and lecture performances) per year
- Ticket Prices: Ticket prices vary widely depending on event and venue. Many are presented free of charge
- Membership: Donations of any amount are greatly appreciated.