Marcus Jarrell Willis has performed with RIOULT, Dominic Walsh Dance Theater, Tania Pérez- Salas Compañía de Danza and Ailey II. Willis performed with Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater from 2008-2016, traveling around the world performing, teaching numerous masterclasses and participating through Outreach in various communities, both locally and abroad. As a teaching artist, he has engaged with Rambert Dance Professional Program, Tring Park Performing Arts School, TU Dance, Joffrey Southwest Dallas, Centre Chorégraphique James Carles, Amsterdam Dance Centre and various training programs, universities and conservatoires, globally. Willis is a YoungArts Level 1 award recipient and Presidential Scholar Nominee.
Willis has presented choreographic work in the 2009 TDDC Contemporary Dance Festival in NYC, The Ailey Dancer’s Resource Fund performances, The Dance Gallery Festival, The Moving Beauty Series and Gdánsk Festival Tańca in Poland. Commissions, residencies and film creations include works for Ailey II, TU Dance, NY Choreographic Institute, with dancers of New York City Ballet, Company Danzante, Ballet Cymru, The Juilliard School, SUNY Purchase Conservatory of Dance, The Ailey School, University of Minnesota, Lucia Marthas Institute for the Performing Arts, Rubicon Dance, COCA, Satellite Collective, The Dance Gallery Festival Level Up Commission in 2013 and The 92nd Y Dance Introduction Series, among others. He was named Best Choreographer for TU Dance creation, Sensible Existence in City Pages 2018 Best of the Twin Cities. Willis was the 2018/19 Leverhulme Choreography Fellow at Rambert Dance in London, during which time he completed the evening length solo creation POM/POM, Portrait of Man/ Pieces of Me and created work with selected dancers of Rambert 2. Most recently, he was appointed the role of Resident Choreographer for Ballet Cymru in Newport, Wales UK, and is continuing the journey of building choreographic works for his independent dance performance project, MJ Willis Project-Inc.
(Photo by: Stepane Chouan)