The Nutcracker Comes to Life December 1-3

Ballerina Doll, Brooklyn (Photo by Erin Rogers | TXK Today)

Texarkana Community Ballet  (TCB) is celebrating their 50th anniversary this year, and to commemorate the event, they have added some new touches to the much anticipated ballet, the Nutcracker.

TCB was founded by Judith McCarty, Dixie Splawn, and Sandra Robinson.  They commenced their efforts of bringing classical ballet to Texarkana in 1967 by presenting a performance of Peter and the Wolf.

The organization is now a concerted effort of Judith McCarty School of Dancing, All Stars Dance Center, Lana LaVoice Grounds School of Dance, Tammie Duncan School of Dance, Patti Smith’s Dancing Unlimited, Joni’s Gymnastics and Dance Centre, and Texarkana Dance Academy.  

Gayle Burrow, Ann Nicholas, Kathy Fomby, Tammie Duncan, Lana Grounds, and Patti Thomas are directors of the Texarkana Community Ballet Board.

This year, there will be 4 performances of the Nutcracker Ballet, starting December 1st and running through December 3rd. Tickets are $8, $11, and $13 and are available for purchase through the Perot Theatre box office.  The price of tickets includes a restoration fee that will be go towards the maintenance of the theatre.

Family Scene Rehearsal
(Photo by Erin Rogers |TXK Today)

New choreography was developed by TCB instructors and directors, and this year’s show boasts new costumes and sets that have been maintained for the last 6 years by Perot Theatre’s handyman, Noah Chrissman.

For those who haven’t had the pleasure of viewing the Nutcracker Ballet, you will not want to miss this opportunity.

The Nutcracker is an adaptation of the story by E.T.A. Hoffmann and was set to music by Tchaikovsky.  

The story begins on the evening of Christmas Eve with a young girl, Clara, and her family. Clara and her brother, Fritz, stand in awe of the decorations and await their gifts at their parents’ annual Christmas gathering.  

Drosselmeyer presenting Fritz with gift of “nuts”
(Photo by Erin Rogers |TXK Today)

Clara receives her beloved Nutcracker from the godfather Drosselmeyer, while her brother receives plain old nuts.  Later, she dreams of a Nutcracker Prince, toy soldiers, and a fierce battle fought against a Mouse King.


puppet theatre show during family scene
(Photo by Erin Rogers | TXK Today)

After Clara and the Nutcracker defeat the Mouse King, the Nutcracker transforms into a Prince and brings Clara on an adventure to the Land of Snow, a forest full of enchantment.

One of the most memorable scenes is when Clara indulges in delectable treats as she observes her Nutcracker toy performing  pas de deux with the Sugar Plum Fairy in celebration of their victory over the Mouse King.  

Clara later awakens to find the whole journey to have been a dream.

Texarkana Community Ballet held auditions for the production in August, with approximately 200 dancers from ages 8-18 present.  Outside dancer and instructor, Carrie Cheng, was brought in as auditioner.  

Soldier Doll- Ben Goesl Ballerina Doll-Brooklynn Bearden, come to life during family scene
6513-Ballerina Doll, Brooklynn
(Photo by Erin Rogers |TXK Today)

Soloist roles are played by the following:

Savannah Halter as the Sugar Plum Fairy

Shelby Sawyer as the Nutcracker  

Emily McMaster as Clara

Will Porterfield as Clara’s Suitor

Julia Hornock as the Dew Drop Fairy

Sydney Sheek as the Snow Queen

Garret Talley as Snow King

Brooklyn Bearden as Ballerina Doll

Ben Goesl will dance as the Soldier Doll

Mary Claire Lynch will dance as Reed Flute soloist.

Seth Small as young son, Fritz.

Michael Skotnikr as Herr Drosselmeyer

Bearden has spent fourteen years dancing ballet and is excited to dance alongside Ben Goesl, Soldier Doll.

Goesl has been dancing for 16 years and is honored to have the experience to dance his last year in Texarkana before graduating.

“I’m very happy I get to dance with someone I’ve known for almost all my life,” he said.  “It’s great to express myself on the stage and show what I can really do.”

Performances will be held at the historic Perot Theatre in downtown Texarkana:

Friday, December 1, 2017 at 7 PM

Saturday, December 2, 2017 at 2PM and 7PM

Sunday, December 3, 2017 at 2 PM.  


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