(ORADELL, NJ) -- This year, Ballet Arts' annual performance of The Nutcracker comes with an early holiday gift – live orchestral music. Ballet Arts, a premiere dance school serving the New York and New Jersey area, is partnering with Adelphi Orchestra for its first-ever ballet with concert musicians. The ballet will be held at River Dell Senior High School (RDHS) on Saturday, December 10th and Sunday, December 11th.
"A live orchestra is a wonderful learning experience for the dancers and a real pleasure for the audience. When you hear Tchaikovsky's music, you can see and feel what is happening and a live orchestra takes the experience to a whole new level," shared Jane Silane and Marilyn Westlake-Nichols, co-directors of Ballet Arts.
A beloved holiday ballet, The Nutcracker, tells the magical tale of a young girl named Clara whose nutcracker doll turns into a prince on Christmas Eve to battle against a fierce Mouse Queen. As a reward for their bravery, the prince invites Clara and her brother Franz to the Kingdom of Sweets where they are treated to dancing delights. Elijah Geolina will play the role of the Prince. Currently, Elijah is training at the prestigious American Ballet Theatre Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis School in the pre-professional program under the direction of Acting Artistic Director Stella Abrera. Elijah has been dancing since he was 8 years old and has been on television shows, including So You Think You Can Dance and Little Big Shots.
Anna Sears, a River Dell High School senior, will be dancing the role of Snow Queen and Coffee, while Naomi Roth, also of River Dell High School, will be dancing as the Sugar Plum Fairy. Saturday evening’s performance will premiere Trixie Lurato of New City, NY as Clara, and Stella Hwang of Oradell, NJ as Franz. Margaret Hahn and Sabrina Klein, both of Oradell, will be playing Clara and Franz, respectively, at the Sunday performance. Amy Brandt, a faculty member at Ballet Arts who danced professionally with the Suzanne Farrell Ballet and Milwaukee Ballet and is currently editor in chief of “Pointe” magazine, will be among the many adults dancing in the party scene. All performers wear beautiful handmade costumes, sewn, maintained, and altered by Gisele Ferrari-Wong of Westwood, Lynn Mitchell of Ridgefield Park, and dedicated parent volunteers and adult students.
The Nutcracker runs Saturday, December 10 at 7:00pm and Sunday, December 11 at 2:00pm. Performances take place at River Dell High School, 55 Pyle Street, Oradell, NJ. Tickets may be purchased on-line at www.BalletArtsNJ.com. For more information call 201-970-7690. Sponsorship opportunities and fundraisers for the live orchestra are available here.
The Ballet Arts School opened its doors in the summer of 1976 by Diana Turner Hauser (Madame). Starting with summer classes, Madame developed Ballet Arts into a highly regarded school with a reputation for excellence in the teaching of classical ballet. The school quickly developed to incorporate the Ballet Arts Company. Their first ballet was La Boutique Fantasque in 1977. Since then, their repertoire has expanded to include The Nutcracker, Sleeping Beauty, Coppelia, Don Quixote, A Midsummer’s Night Dream, and Etudes. Performing all over the Bergen County area, the Ballet Arts Company is comprised not only of students, but also adult performers and professionals who all share their love of performing.
What started as a small ballet school has now developed into a special haven for all those who love dance. The core focus at Ballet Arts is on technique and stage productions, as well as instilling a sense of greater creativity, discipline, self-awareness, confidence, grace and fitness. Their mission is to create a safe and nurturing environment where in students of all ages and abilities may study the performing arts with enjoyment through various degrees of performance opportunities.
Adelphi Orchestra is a professional, non-profit orchestra performing symphonic, chamber, operatic, and dance concerts. It is northern New Jersey's longest continuously performing group. "We are thrilled to be partnering with Ballet Arts and RDHS Dancing to live music, rather than a recording, is an educational experience for everyone, not just the dancers, but also the student musicians who will be playing," says Sylvia Rubin, president of Adelphi Orchestra. Scott Jackson Wiley, who has nearly 30 years of experience, will be conducting the 38 musicians in the ensemble. Three high school students from area schools will have the opportunity to play with the professional musicians. RDHS l students trained in the areas of lights, sound, and crew will help stage the production.