BAM Affiliation The Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater became a resident dance company at BAM in 1969. BAM provided administrative offices, rehearsal space, and salaries. The residency included a full season of performances, robust community events, and a school serving hundreds of children. Alvin Ailey danced at BAM twice in 1956 (two years before he formed AAADT)-once in a performance headlined by Harry Belafonte and also with the Sophie Maslow and Company. Ailey wrote in his autobiography, "The concert dance scene was basically closed to black dancers... I very much wanted to be a choreographer ... If you live in the elite world of dance, you find yourself in a world rife with racism. Let's face it." He often said that "dance came from the people and that it should always be delivered back to the people."