Lester Horton company

by Jacob Spallino
(Richmond, Virginia )

I just want to know where they performed and what they did before Alvin Ailey became part of it. And after he joined, before Horton died, I just want to know what they worked on together.

Comments for Lester Horton company

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Apr 11, 2012
Answer from Maria
by: Maria

Dear Jacob,

Horton started his work at the Indianapolis Civic Theatre but then he moved to California in 1929 where he founded his company. I don't have the name of the theaters where they performed but it must have been in Los Angeles, according to the historical clues that are easily found.

The following are some of the works Horton did, before Alvin Ailey joined his company, in 1949:

- Kootenni warrior dance (1932)

- Aztec ballet (1934)

- Salomé and Lysistrata (1936)

- Totem spell (1938)

- The beloved (1948)

I've found the titles of the following pieces that correspond to the period where Ailey was part of the company. It is very probably that he danced on all of them.

- Another detail about Klee (1951)

- Field of pain (1952)

(The titles of the pieces I quoted might be slightly incorrect as I'm translating from several languages)

You know Horton also choreographed for films a lot. There's a list of those dances, with dates, in the article about him at Wikipedia.

Here are some easy to find books where you could find more information:

- Warren, Larry. Lester Horton: Modern Dance Pioneer. New York: Dance Horizons, 1977.

- Dunning, Jennifer. Alvin Ailey: A Life In Dance. 1996.

I hope this helps,

Warm regards,

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