(Posted Dec. 8, 2018)
Ballet Jörgen gives local dancers a Nutcracker experience
By Heather Jamieson
professional dancers were “breathtaking and I loved getting
to know them,” says Keradwyn Thompson about her first experience,
in 2016, dancing in Canada’s Ballet Jörgen production of
The Nutcracker: A Canadian Tradition.
dancers Keradwyn Thompson and Lily Mialkowski
will appear together in the Ballet Jorgen
performance of The Nutcracker. PHOTO SUPPLIED
was even more exciting than I imagined,” she recalls.
is the third consecutive year the 11-year-old has successfully
auditioned for a role. While she is once again dancing
the part of a chipmunk, she explains there are four chipmunk
roles and she has played a different one each year.
friend and fellow Cumbrae School of Dancing student Lily
Mialkowski, 12, has earned a role in this year's production
aftershe unsuccessfully auditioned last year.
wasn’t discouraged about trying again," says Lily,
who will also be playing a squirrel. "In fact, I
think I was more encouraged so I could prove to myself
that you can do whatever you set your mind to.”
mother Nancy MacKinnon is very proud of how her daughter
bounced back from her disappointment.
Harquail and Charlotte Goyetche are the other Cumbrae
students dancing in this year’s production. Keradwyn’s
advice to those dancing for the first time is to do their
flies, so remember to enjoy the experience and don’t forget
to have fun.” (Keradwyn will also be performing in Cinderella
and the Ice Slipper at The Gladstone Theatre starting
part of the Nutcracker cast is a significant commitment
for dancers, who are already dancing many hours a week
in their regular classes. An intensive evening and full-day
of rehearsals followed auditions at the Shenkman in mid-October.
weekly rehearsals continue every Sunday morning at the
School of Dance in New Edinburg until final rehearsals
with Ballet Jörgen’s co-founder and artistic director
father Kevin Thompson is impressed with Jörgen’s support
and encouragement. “He
really makes the children feel like they are part of the
Jörgen ballet family.”
about 80 Ottawa-area dancers who auditioned, 16 from eight
Ottawa-area dance schools were chosen to perform as woodland
creatures in the three performances at the Shenkman. Another
15 young dancers will perform in the two performances
at the Meridian Theatres at Centerpointe.
was the case last year, the only male dancer chosen for
either cast was Viggo Batabyal-Miller from the Academy
of Dance Arts in Orléans. Cumbrae dancers were also among
local dancers chosen to dance in the recent Alberta Ballet
production of The Nutcracker at the National Arts Centre.
cannot say enough about how grateful I am as a teacher
to the companies that open roles to local children,” says
Amer Harvie, director of Cumbrae. “It is so inspiring
for them to be part of a professional production.”
at the Shenkman are at 7 p.m. on Dec. 12 and at 1:30 and
7 p.m. on Dec. 13. Visit www.shenkmanarts.ca
or call 613-580-2700 for more information or to purchase
story was made possible thanks to the generous support
of our local business partners.)
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