Elizabeth Roxas


Elizabeth Roxas was born in Manila and was the youngest member of Ballet Philippines.  After receiving scholarships to Joffrey Ballet, The Graham and The Ailey School, she danced with the Metropolitan Opera Ballet, Ohad Naharin and Joyce Trisler Dance Company. She then joined Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater as the first “Filipina”, where she was a principal dancer from 1984-1997.  The New York Times described her as “a cool, still, lyrical center of the Ailey storm.”  While dancing, Roxas worked with many of the most significant choreographers, including, Alvin Ailey, Katherine Dunham, Jerome Robbins, Talley Beatty, Lar Lubavitch, John Butler, Ulysses Dove and Judith Jamison. Roxas performed in the Emmy award-winning PBS specials “Two by Dove” and Judith Jamison’s “A Hymn for Alvin Ailey”. In 1997, she was featured in Dance Magazine’s cover article and named by Avenue Magazine as one of the 500 most influential Asian-Americans.  After leaving Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, Roxas was asked to perform on Broadway in The King and I as Eliza. After her Broadway debut, she went back to concert dance and made several guest appearances in the United States and abroad, as well as returning as a guest for Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater for many occasions.

She has worked with Anna Deavere Smith at the Graduate School of New York University and was the Movement Coordinator for Smith’s last show Let Me Down Easy. Roxas has also choreographed in many regional theaters and off-Broadway.  She has taught at Tisch School of the Arts through CAP21 and was guest faculty at Harvard University in 2010.  She is continuously involved in re-staging ballets of Alvin Ailey’s works and is an integral part of the Ailey legacy.  Roxas is a Horton technique faculty member at The Ailey School, and has taught dance classes for the Actor’s Studio. In the Summer of 2014, she was invited to Beijing to choreograph a solo for Yabin Wang, as part of “Dream in Three Episodes”.

She is married to Robert Z. Dobrish, a prominent matrimonial attorney in Manhattan.