Seven Swampscott dancers are performing in Boston Ballet’s production of Mikko Nissinen’s The Nutcracker in the roles of "Page", "Little Mouse", and "Urchin". The children are all students at Boston Ballet School's North Shore Studio. This timeless classic is presented by State Street Corporation, and will run from November 29-December 29, 2013 at the Boston Opera House.
Jackson Johnson-Dobbins, 10, performs the role of "Page", a palace attendant. Jackson started dancing at the age of 3, and is in his second year as a student at Boston Ballet School. Audrey Jurma-Kraft, 10, performs the role of "Little Mouse". Audrey started dancing at 4 years old, and is in her fifth year at Boston Ballet School. This is both Jackson and Audrey's second time performing in Boston Ballet's Nutcracker.
Katie Kara'a, 10, performs the role of "Page", and started dancing at Boston Ballet School when she was 5 years of age. Carly LaKind, 8, performs the role of "Urchin", and started dancing at Boston Ballet School when she was 4 years old. Ava Landen, 10, performs the role of "Page". Ava started dancing at 2 years of age, and is in her sixth year at Boston Ballet School. Anastasia Shub, 9, performs the role of "Urchin". Anastasia started dancing at 3 years old, and is in her fourth year at Boston Ballet School. Franciska Southan, 10, performs the role of "Urchin". Franciska started dancing at the age of 3, and is in her fifth year at Boston Ballet School. This is Katie, Carly, Ava, Anastasia, and Franciska's first time performing in Boston Ballet's Nutcracker.
The Swampscott children join nearly 250 other young dancers from around New England cast in The Nutcracker. Three different casts will take on various roles, such as toy soldiers, pages, reindeer, lambs, polichinelles, baby mice, and party children during Boston Ballet's 43 performances of The Nutcracker.
Artistic Director Mikko Nissinen and Robert Perdziola chose to set the new production in the early 1800s, in what many know as the Jane Austen era. Over 350 costumes were created, each handmade and custom painted to match Perdziola’s exquisite designs. The innovative sets contain extensive amounts of moving scenery, making the entire production a truly magical experience.
Students of Boston Ballet School in The Nutcracker were hailed by The Boston Globe as “adorable, focused and disciplined” handling serious pattern and partner work with “impressive aplomb.” All children performing in The Nutcracker are students of Boston Ballet School and coached by an experienced staff including Boston Ballet Artistic Director Mikko Nissinen, Boston Ballet School’s Director Margaret Tracey, Ballet Mistress Melanie Atkins and Boston Ballet School’s world-renowned faculty. Students have an exciting schedule through the months of October, November, and December, which includes rehearsals with company dancers, costume fittings, experiencing the unique, backstage atmosphere at The Boston Opera House, and numerous performances accompanied by Boston Ballet Orchestra and enthusiastic audiences.
Participating in a full-length ballet is an important performance opportunity for students, exposing them to aspects of ballet they don't experience in a regular class. The students learn about the hard work and enjoyment that composes a live ballet performance and have the unique opportunity to dance alongside Boston Ballet’s internationally acclaimed company dancers.
Boston Ballet School is the largest ballet school in North America now operating studios in Boston, Newton, and Marblehead and other programs throughout New England. Over 10,000 students participate in Boston Ballet School’s year-round, summer, adult, and outreach programs each year.
All performances of The Nutcracker will take place at The Boston Opera House, November 29 – December 29, 2013.
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