The philosophy of dance according to Alonzo King
Dream Up, the BNP Paribas Foundation's international program for education through artistic practice is moving to San Francisco. Active in 26 countries, it follows today the educational project of dance of Alonzo King. The partnership between LINES Ballet and the BNP Paribas Foundation is 'vital', according to Alonzo King.
Teaching through confidence
As adults we plan, calculate and order our actions, relationships and lives. Children, however, live in the moment. They live in a wonderful magical world. This is something Alonzo King understands, as he remembers it well. As a child he was amazed by the grace with which his mother moved around the family's apartment. "One day I realised that there were two different but coexisting universes; what adults told me and the way their bodies expressed it. That was when I decided to dedicate my life to studying the language of movement," he explains in the building currently occupied by his ballet company in San Francisco.
“ One day I realised that there were two different but coexisting universes; what adults told me and the way their bodies expressed it. That was when I decided to dedicate my life to studying the language of movement ”
Choreographer and creator of the LINES Ballet Company
This confidence in the body and in movement, the words of the body, will never leave Alonzo King. It lives within him, acting like an energy. It has pushed him to scale the heights of the world of dance, from the School of American Ballet in New York to Fisk University in Nashville. Above all, Alonzo has infused this energy into the LINES Ballet Company that he founded in 1982.
Expression through danceToday, the LINES Ballet Company is one of America’s biggest dance companies. The BNP Paribas Foundation and Bank of the West (a BNP Paribas Group subsidiary) have been supporting the American choreographer's work for many years. Through DREAM UP, they support educational programmes run by Alonzo for young people from underprivileged backgrounds in San Francisco. By discovering the basics of choreography and dance with volunteer professional dancers from the company, they are able to regain a feeling of confidence in the future. Dream Up in California draws on Alonzo King’s experience and teaching to open these young people up to the world around them.