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Alvin Ailey Dance Theater senior artistic director fired amid sexual harassment allegations: report

2020-07-22

A senior artistic director at one of the most prominent dance companies in the country has been fired amid allegations of sexual harassment, The New York Observer first reported on Monday night.

Troy Powell, 51, worked at the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater and was dismissed following an investigation commissioned by The Ailey School in New York City to look into the misconduct claims. Powell was the artistic director of Ailey’s junior touring company and was a teacher at its school.

The Ailey organization said in a statement that its investigation found that Powell had “engaged in inappropriate communications with adults enrolled in the School.”

Powell had been placed on a leave of absence by the school in June, after posts on TikTok sparked the investigation.

According to the Observer, one of the posts claimed that “guys gotta sleep with Troy Powell” in order to get into his touring company, while another said that the school was housing an unnamed sexual predator.

Additionally, four former students told CNN that Powell had abused his position in ways beyond those outlined by the school’s statement, including touching students inappropriately.

Powell’s firing ends a very lengthy relationship with the school that began when he was chosen for a scholarship at age nine. After retiring as a dancer in 2001, he began teaching at the school and choreographing for the junior company.