Press Release




Unique programming to bring dance to the masses; Helps preserve pioneering artist’s legacy

ATLANTA (August 22, 2016) – Today the award-winning performing arts training center, Atlanta’s Resource for Entertainment & Arts (AREA), announced the launch of its strategic partnership with Ailey Extension. Through innovative programming that brings dance to the doorsteps of everyday people, AREA will help expand the rich tradition of the Ailey organization and cultivate the next generation of artists. The partnership will kick off at AREA’s midtown studio on Saturday, September 17, 2016 at 4:00 p.m. A twoclass workshop will be taught by master Ailey Extension hip-hop instructor Tweetboogie and Ailey Extension Director Lisa Johnson-Willingham.

AREA’s performing arts center will serve as the primary location for the Ailey Extension Atlanta, which will expose participants to professional dance through workshops led by Ailey Extension instructors and former Ailey dancers. Dancers in Atlanta, and throughout the southeastern region, will also gain access to cuttingedge seasonal workshops, summer intensives, panel discussions with prominent instructors, and professional development. Collectively, the Ailey Extension offers instruction in more than 23 different dance and fitness techniques at all levels. In addition to educational opportunities, AREA students will also qualify for scholarships.

“It’s a privilege to be chosen to help bring Ailey to the people of Atlanta, and to give back to the community of youth and adults of all backgrounds in the Arts,” said Jai McClendon Jones, founder and artistic director of AREA. “The hard work and dedication of our amazing staff, teaching artists, and clientele will honor the rich tradition that Alvin Ailey set forth for all Arts enthusiasts to embrace!”

“For more than a decade, Ailey Extension has provided opportunities for kids, teens, and adults from all backgrounds to learn dance. By collaborating with partners such as AREA, we not only preserve the rich tradition of the Ailey organization, but also bolster our presence in Atlanta— a market that has long been critical to our success,” said Lisa Johnson-Willingham, director of the Alvin Ailey Extension. “Jai Jones’ creative prowess combined with her reputation for making dance fun and accessible makes AREA the ideal Ailey Extension partner.”


4-5:30pm | Horton with Lisa Johnson-Willingham (Kids, ages 8-12 years) | Hip-Hop with TweetBoogie (Teens and Adults)

5:30-6pm | Break

6-7:15pm | Hip-Hop with TweetBoogie (Kids, ages 8-12 years) | Horton with Lisa Johnson-Willingham (Teens and Adults)

About AREA

Voted Best in Arts & Entertainment in Atlanta, AREA has served the Atlanta community since 2009 by providing pre-professional and professional training and development classes, workshops, and performance opportunities. AREA is interesting in cultivating the entertainment stars of tomorrow while forging relationships and collaborations with the arts community locally and across the nation. For more information visit

About Ailey Extension

Since its inception in 2005, the Ailey Extension has fulfilled Mr. Ailey’s life-long commitment of bringing dance to everyone by offering “real classes for real people.” The Ailey Extension offers of over 80 classes per week in nearly 25 different dance and fitness techniques such as Horton, Ballet, Masala Bhangra, West African, Samba, Jazz, Zumba, House and Hip Hop. All levels are welcome, including beginners. Over 125,000 people have taken classes at Ailey’s home, New York’s largest building dedicated to dance, where dancers of all levels and walks of life can learn and be inspired – body, mind, and spirit.


Media contacts: Lalohni Campbell, , 404-593-7145 Charnelle Wilson,, 212-405-9083