Ballet Tennessee’s The Nutcracker will take place at the Hayes Concert Hall in the UTC Fine Arts Center on Dec. 16 and 17 at 8 p.m., and Dec. 18 at 2 p.m.
Guest artists Sean Hilton of the Northwest Florida Ballet and Fredrick Davis of Dance Theatre of Harlem will supplement the cast of local dancers and community performers.
This production kicks off Ballet Tennessee’s 25th season and highlights the success of its aptly-named signature programs: Professional Training Program and Talent Identification Program.
The majority of the soloist and principal roles are performed by local dancers who are participants of PTP and TIP.
"Some very talented dancers come through these programs, including our guest artist Fredrick Davis," said Artistic Director Anna Baker VanCura.
Other alumni who will be performing include Joseph Lynch, formerly of Montgomery Ballet in Alabama, and Hannah Locke of Richmond Ballet, Virginia, who will bring their experience to Ballet Tennessee this season.
While it may be considered a risk to place young dancers in ballerina roles, especially when last year’s draw was professionals from New York City Ballet, "The programs work," said Ms. VanCura. The company upholds standards of excellence at all levels and consistently creates professional quality performances that are delightful and exciting to attend.
The ballerina roles will be performed by Alondra Gomez, 14, TIP and PTP dancer, student of CCA, as the Sugarplum Fairy, partnered by Sean Hilton, and Candace Ricketts, 15, PTP dancer, as the Snow Queen, partnered by Fredrick Davis.
"This is a ‘don’t miss’ production, with local dancers who have the heart, ability, talent, motivation, and ‘it’ factor that promises a bright professional future," said Ms. Vancura. "You will be able to say you saw them here in Chattanooga first!"
Tickets for this production go on sale at the UTC Fine Arts Center on Dec 1. Contact the box office at 423 425-4269 or www.utc.edu/finearts.