The mission of A.I.M, under the artistic direction of choreographer Kyle Abraham, is to create an evocative interdisciplinary body of work. Born into hip-hop culture in the late 1970s and grounded in Abraham’s artistic upbringing in classical cello, piano, and the visual arts, the goal of the movement is to delve into identity in relation to a personal history. The work entwines a sensual and provocative vocabulary with a strong emphasis on sound, human behavior and all things visual in an effort to create an avenue for personal investigation and exposing that on stage. A.I.M is a representation of dancers from various disciplines and diverse personal backgrounds. Combined together, these individualities create movement that is manipulated and molded into something fresh and unique.
About Kyle Abraham
2018 Princess Grace Statue Award Recipient, 2017-18 Joyce Creative Residency Artist, 2016 Doris Duke Recipient and 2015 City Center Choreographer in Residence, Kyle Abraham is a 2013 MacArthur Fellow who began his dance training at the Civic Light Opera Academy and the Creative and Performing Arts High School in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He continued his dance studies in New York, receiving a BFA from SUNY Purchase and an MFA from NYU Tisch School of the Arts, an honorary Doctorate in Fine Arts from Washington Jefferson College, and is currently serving as a visiting professor in residence at UCLA.
In November 2012, Abraham was named the newly appointed New York Live Arts Resident Commissioned Artist for 2012–2014. Just one month later, Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater premiered Abraham’s Another Night at New York City Center.
Rebecca Bengal of Vogue wrote, “What Abraham brings to Ailey is an avant-garde aesthetic, an original and politically minded downtown sensibility that doesn’t distinguish between genres but freely draws on a vocabulary that is as much Merce and Martha as it is Eadweard Muybridge and Michael Jackson.” That same year, Abraham was named the 2012 Jacob’s Pillow Dance Award recipient and 2012 USA Ford Fellow, before serving as a choreographic contributor for Beyonce’s 2013 British Vogue cover shoot.
Abraham received a prestigious Bessie Award for Outstanding Performance in Dance for his work in The Radio Show, and a Princess Grace Award for Choreography in 2010. The previous year, he was selected as one of Dance Magazine’s “25 To Watch” for 2009, and received a Jerome Travel and Study Grant in 2008.
His choreography has been presented throughout the United States and abroad: at Fall for Dance Festival at New York City Center, Lincoln Center, Brooklyn Academy of Music, The Joyce Theater, The Los Angeles Music Center, Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival, Théâtre de la Ville, Sadler’s Wells, Maison de la Danse, Tanz Im August, On The Boards, Danspace Project, Dance Theater Workshop, Bates Dance Festival, Harlem Stage, Montreal, Ottawa, Italy, Germany, Sweden, France, Jordan, Ecuador, Dublin’s Project Arts Center, The Okinawa Prefectural Museum & Art Museum located in Okinawa, Japan, The Andy Warhol Museum, The Byham, and The Kelly-Strayhorn Theater in his hometown of Pittsburgh, PA.
In addition to performing and developing new works for his company, A.I.M, Abraham premiered in 2016 Untitled America, a three-part commissioned work for the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater; toured The Serpent and The Smoke, a pas de deux for himself and acclaimed Bessie Award-winning and former New York City Ballet Principal Dancer Wendy Whelan as part of Restless Creature; and choreographed for the feature-length film The Book of Henry, for acclaimed director Colin Trevorrow. Abraham recently premiered The Runaway for New York City Ballet’s 2018 Fall Fashion Gala, which was recognized as “Best of Dance for 2018” by The New York Times.
In 2011, OUT Magazine labeled Abraham as the “best and brightest creative talent to emerge in New York City in the age of Obama”.
“The best and brightest creative talent to emerge in New York City in the age of Obama.” - Out Magazine
“Lush movement, infectious music and magnetic dancers (the choreographer included)...” - Siobhan Burke, The New York Times
“What strikes you first about [Abraham's] choreography is the austere discipline underpinning its expressiveness.” - Luke Jennings, The Guardian (2017)
“Abraham’s creative range is too wide and too buoyant for him to feel constrained by the role of angry black choreographer. His dances may be political but they are also aspirational, complex and upbeat.” - Judith Mackrell, The Guardian (2017)
“Abraham is a stylish, highly formal dancemaker, but his dances have a touch of real life and grit to them, and it’s that quality that captures our attention.” - Marina Harss, DanceTabs, October 2017
“A gut check on our collective humanity, Meditation: A Silent Prayer stands as one of Abraham’s finest works to date.” - Steve Sucato, Arts Air, October 2018
“Unlike much of what we see onstage these days, Abraham’s choreography has the kind of expressiveness that infuses good conversation.” - Deborah Jowitt, Arts Journal, August 2017
“It’s been a long time since I’ve seen a group of virtuoso dancers look as natural, as human, as Abraham’s company.” - Joan Acocella, The New Yorker, January 2017
“...one of the most provocative, puzzling and engrossing dance programs to hit Boston in some time.” - Karen Campbell, Boston Globe, October 2014
“...Abraham investigates questions of identity on many levels...he’s unafraid to face these issues of race, gender, and societal oppression head-on.” - Emma Wiseman, Hyperallergic, October 2014
“The movement is both kinetic and poetic, and couples fine detail with broad strokes. The choreographer’s range is vast without being mindless.” - Apollinaire Scherr, Financial Times, September 2014
- A.I.M - Official website.