Bill T. Jones is the cofounder of the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company, and is a multitalented artist, choreographer, dancer, theater director, and writer who has received major honors, including a 1994 MacArthur “Genius” Award and Kennedy Center Honors in 2010. Jones and his partner Arnie Zane formed the dance company in 1982 and together produced 13 performance pieces that were notable for their incorporation of social commentary and identity.
“I remember that Willi was the kind of Black man that I didn’t know. A sophisticated, accomplished, gay Black man. But he was playing that kind of celebrity game, as well. The BAM Producers Council was formed to pull together various successful, glamorous people to support BAM’s growing mission. And the Next Wave brought in performers like me and Arnie Zane, who were just entry level. I mean, had I ever performed at an opera house before or on a big stage? No. They made that possible.” —Bill T. Jones