11:54 PM EDT 10/16/2013

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Natalie Portman's Longtime Love | Natalie Portman

Natalie Portman's Longtime Love

Originally posted 06/08/2004 06:00AM

Natalie Portman has had a longtime love affair with ... dance. Since age 10, the Long Island native has been attending performances by the renowned Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater in New York City. So it's no wonder that she turned up at Harlem's famed Apollo Theater recently for a benefit gala that raised more than $550,000 for The Ailey School and a new theater. "I loved dancing when I was younger, I did everything from ballet to jazz," Portman, who attended the event with parents Shelly and Avner, told us at the afterparty, held in a tent behind the Apollo. "Ailey is the best staple of New York, culturally. There is so much passion and joy in the dancing, it's so much more like acting than any other dance I've seen." Another fan is Angela Bassett, who also attended the benefit.

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