‘The Nutcracker’ is coming soon

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, November 20, 2013

The River Region Ballet is once again presenting the seasonal favorite “The Nutcracker.” The full length version of this timeless Tchaikovsky classic will be performed on Saturday, Dec. 7, at 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, Dec. 8, at 2 p.m. Professional guest artists Morgan McEwen and Scott Weber will be dancing the roles of the Sugar Plum Fairy and Cavalier and also the Snow Queen and King. Both performances are at Destrehan High School Auditorium, No. 1 Wildcat Lane. Tickets are $15.
 As a special gift to the children of the community, RRB will also present a special children’s matinee on Saturday, Dec. 7, at 3 p.m. Tickets are $10. This will be an abbreviated one-hour performance for their younger fans. This performance will be followed by a “Sugar Plum Party.” The audience members will be invited to join the Sugar Plum Fairy onstage and experience “The Kingdom of Sweets” for themselves. They can meet and talk to their favorite characters, experience what it’s like to be on the stage under the glowing lights and take pictures. Each young audience member will be given a special gift to remember their Nutcracker experience.
The River Region Ballet announced that Kaela Hymel, daughter of David and Valerie Hymel of Luling, will be performing the role of Clara in this year’s production. Hymel is 15 years old and a sophomore at Hahnville High School, where she is an honor student. Hymel is also a member of the Beta Club, Interact Club and HHS Hi-stepper Dance Team. She has studied dance for 13 years and has danced at Images Dance Studio under the direction of Susan Ferrara since 2009. She has danced with the River Region Ballet in numerous ballets such as “Sleeping Beauty,” “Thumbelina,” “The Fairy Garden,” “Giselle” and “The Nutcracker.” Starting as a mouse in  “The Nutcracker,” she has made her way through roles as soldier, friend, confectioner, waltz, snow, arabian and this year Clara.
Hymel had this to say: “As a mouse, watching Clara perform in ‘The Nut-cracker,’ I was inspired to reach my dream of dancing this role. Now, I want to be able to be the Clara that inspires that one little girl to also reach their dancing dreams one day.”
The River Region Ballet’s production of The Nutcracker will utilize a cast of approximately 70 performers. Many have extensive dance backgrounds and have performed many years with the River Region Ballet. They are vibrant young dancers with experience in a variety of roles. RRB soloists are Jessica Touchet and Molly Nagele. Featured dancers and corps de ballet are Madison Cancienne, Emily Champagne, Wayland Charles, Rose Coats, Sarah DiLeo, Elizabeth Gilmore, Rebecca Helm, Lianne Keller, Juanita Marino, Taylor Pradat, Madeleine Raymond, Heather Rayneri and Laura Sullivan. Junior Company dancers are Emma France, LeeAnn Hovis, Natalie Gilmore, Nicole Gilmore, Kate Lougon, Ashley Payne, Caroline Payne, Grace Raymond and Shelby Walls. Other dancers are Lesley Armand, Emma Cazentre, Madalyn Champagne, Isaiah Charles, Lily Coats, Emma Creel, Katie Favalora, Caroline Green, Sarah Green, Nicole Hartel, Joshua Hymel, Alycia Kister, Caylee Landry, Reyse Marcel, Amelia Mire, Madison Neighbors, Ava Rogers, Kaylyn Sassin, Ben Schweitzer, Ella Schweitzer, Autumn Sharon, Lauren Snider, Evelyn Stein-Donaldson, Lily Stein-Donaldson, Camryn Swint and Lauren Webre.
Featured actors are Luke Schaubhut as Uncle Drosselmeyer, Rhys Keller as the Mouse King, Evan Keller as the Nutcracker, Lucas Harms as Mr. Silberhaus, Heidi Schindler as Mrs. Silberhaus and Nathan Schweitzer as Fritz. Also performing in the Party scene are Trishan Charles, Ronald and Catherine Coats, Matt Lewis, Stacey Payne, Joey Schweitzer, Erika Spengler and Paul Sullivan.
Tickets may purchased at www.brownpapertickets.com. All seats are reserved. Tickets may also be purchased at the door for $20 for full length performances, $15 for the Sugar Plum Matinee.