National Dance Week kicks off April 21-30 across the country, and choreographer and former Broadway performer Debbie Allen leads the way as national spokesperson.
A choreographer in all walks of entertainment, Allen created the dances for 1999's Academy Awards, the film "Amistad" and the cult Broadway flop, CarrieWest Side Story, played Charity in the 1986 revival of Sweet Charity and had roles in Guys and Dolls and Purlie.
Past dance spokespersons have included Gregory Hines, Paula Abdul and Ann Reinking. 1999's spokesperson was film actress Shirley MacLaine.
Chicago's Sandy Duncan leads New York City's major dance week event, beginning at noon on April 24 at Lincoln Center's Josie Robertson Plaza. Among the performers will be the cast of Saturday Night Fever, The Parsons Dance Company, Ballet Hispanico, Doug Varone & Dancers, the cast of A Few Good Men...Dancin, and Damien Woetzel, principal dancer with New York City Ballet.
This event is sponsored by Dancers Responding to AIDS, the dance world's equivalent to Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS. For more information on National Dance Week, visit the website: www.ambrosiaweb.com/nationaldanceweek.
--By Christine Ehren