Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre, the modern dance company established by Alvin Ailey in 1958 and then nurtured after his death by Ailey's muse Judith Jamison, acquired its third artistic director, Robert Battle, barely three years ago. Battle's impact already was in evidence during last year's visit. The Ailey dancers were as gorgeous, as superbly trained and athletic as ever, but they showed additional depth and precision as they tackled challenging new repertoire. This visit offers two programs, again emphasizing new works. Evening shows include the West Coast premiere of British choreographer Wayne McGregor's Chroma (2006), paired with D-Man in the Waters (Part I) , a 1998 revision of the original 1989 work by Bill T. Jones, who nabbed Tony Awards for Fela! and Spring Awakening in between running his own company. The matinees include another West Coast premiere, Lift (2013), from choreographer Azure Barton, and the return of the always popular Grace, by Ronald K. Brown. The emphasis on the new does not mean the current leadership has forgotten the elements that make this company so successful. Each performance closes with the company's signature work, Ailey's gospel-informed Revelations, polished to perfection. Still, it's what comes before that finale that commands attention to the company's renewed energy and depth. Segerstrom Center for the Arts, 600 Town Center Drive, Costa Mesa; thru March 29, 7:30 p.m.; Sat.-Sun., March 29-30, 2 p.m.; $25-$119. (714) 556-2787,

March 27-29, 7:30 p.m.; March 29-30, 2 p.m., 2014
(Expired: 03/30/14)

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