Founded by Former Alvin Ailey Dancers Dwight Rhoden and Desmond Richardson, Complexions Offers Spectacular Cutting-Edge Choreography with Roots in Classical Dance

CHICAGO — Ballet will be fused with urban street dance, multi-media, fashion, art, improvisation and poetry when Complexions Contemporary Ballet comes to the Auditorium Theatre of Roosevelt University (ATRU) for two performances only, Saturday, Nov. 10, 2007 at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, Nov. 11, 2007 at 2 p.m.

Complexions Contemporary Ballet, which received The New York Times’ prestigious “Critics Choice” award in 1995, was founded by former Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater dancers Dwight Rhoden and Desmond Richardson based on a shared vision of exploring a full range of human emotions while bringing together a diverse group of dancers to express their uniqueness in culture, race and background. The New York Post raved that Complexions Contemporary Ballet has “a remarkable group of dancers: high-voltage, high-wattage, high energy.” New York Magazine called Complexions Co-Founders and Artistic Directors Rhoden and Richardson “two of the greatest virtuosos ever to emerge from Ailey Land.” Attitudes Magazine described Complexions as being “filled with a microcosm of today’s hottest dance talents.”

The program for this engagement at ATRU will be announced at a future date.

“Complexions Contemporary Ballet is a company that we think will really resonate with Chicago audiences,” said Brett Batterson, executive director, Auditorium Theatre of Roosevelt University. “The extraordinary energy and spirit of the choreography, performed by some of America’s most virtuoso dancers, is truly contagious. It will be a thrill to have them dance at the Auditorium. ”

Desmond Richardson, hailed by The New York Times as “one of the greatest modern dancers of his time,” joined the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater in 1987. Following 7 years as a principal dancer with Alvin Ailey, Richardson traveled around the world as a guest artist in performances with world-renowned companies including Ballet Frankfurt, the Swedish Opera Ballet, The Washington Ballet, Teatro at La Scala and the San Francisco Ballet. Richardson received a Tony Award nomination in 1999 for his performance in the Broadway musical Fosse, and appeared in the Oscar-winning film Chicago, as well as Patrick Swayze’s film Without a Word.

Dwight Rhoden has created more than sixty works for Complexions Contemporary Ballet. Rhoden has also created works for the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, where he was a principal dancer, the Joffrey Ballet, New York City Ballet, Dance Theater of Harlem and Dayton Contemporary Dance Company. The New York Times described Rhoden as “a master of invention,” whose choreography was like “hot molten lava, flowing with undeniable power.” He has also choreographed for film, including Patrick Swayze’s feature Without a Word. Rhoden is a recipient of the 1998 New York Foundation for the Arts Award and the 2001 Choo San Goh Award for Choreography.

Complexions Contemporary Ballet has performed across the United States and internationally, including engagements at Joyce Theater in New York City; Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center; the Brooklyn Academy of Music; The Mahalia Jackson Performance Arts Center in New Orleans; the Paramount Theater in Seattle; and the Music Center in Los Angeles. European festivals appearances include Italy’s Festival of Dance; the Isle De Dance Festival in Paris, the Holland Dance Festival; Steps International Festival in Switzerland; and Vail International Dance Festival.

Complexions Contemporary Ballet performs as part of the 2007-2008 International Dance Series at The Auditorium Theatre of Roosevelt University Saturday, Nov. 10, 2007 at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, Nov. 11, 2007 at 2 p.m. Tickets are $30 / $34 / $40 / $49. For tickets, visit the Auditorium Theatre Box Office at 50 E. Congress Parkway, call (312) 902-1500, or visit or Subscribers receive a 10% discount; call (312) 431-2357 for subscription information. Discounted tickets for groups of 10 or more are also available by calling (312) 431-2357.

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The Auditorium Theatre of Roosevelt University, located at 50 E. Congress Parkway, is an independent, not-for-profit organization committed to presenting the finest in international, cultural and community programming to Chicago, and to the continued restoration and preservation of the National Historic Landmark Auditorium Theatre. For more information about programming, volunteer and donor opportunities or theatre tours, call (312) 922-2110 or visit, now featuring Chicago’s Landmark Stage, a comprehensive online history of the Auditorium from 1889 through today, made possible by the generous support of the American Express Performing Arts Fund.