The Altoona Dance Theatre Company and School will present "The Nutcracker" at 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday at the Jaffa Shrine Facility, Altoona.
Professional dancers from New York City will be guests in the performance.
Live music will be used. The Hollidaysburg Area Senior High Orchestra will be playing "The Nutcracker" music Friday night, and the Altoona Area High School Wind Ensemble will be playing "The Nutcracker" music for Saturday night.
Part of the cast of The Altoona Dance Theatre’s “The Nutcracker” are (from left): Noah Staines as The Bunny, Jeremy Rhine as Prince, Frank Spagnola as Drosselmeyer, Rylie Whitaker as Clara (on Saturday night), Jaydyn Shuke as Clara (on Friday night), Hunter Osmolinksi as Nutcracker and Aleyah Arthur as Mouse King.
Professional dancers who will be performing in the show are Michelle Joy and Brynt Beitman.
Joy is originally from Arcata, Calif., where she began her dance training at The Dancers Studio. She was later selected to attend the Houston Ballet Academy on a full merit scholarship. At her graduation performance, Joy received the John Smither scholarship award. Throughout her career, she danced in professional ballet companies, including Colorado Ballet, Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre, American Repertory Ballet and The Metropolitan Opera Ballet in Lincoln Center. Joy has performed works by choreographers, including Petipa, Balanchine, Twyla Tharp, Dwight Rhoden and Christopher Wheeldon. In 2006, she competed and took first place overall in the National Society of Arts and Letters national dance competition. She also performed the leading role the a workshop of a new musical, "49th Street and Other Stories." She most recently performed on tour dancing and singing in the international tour of "Phantom of the Opera." Aside from dancing, Joy studies music and loves to travel. Beitman, a native of Dallas, earned a bachelor of fine arts degree from The Julliard School. He is a member of Take Dance Company and works as a freelance dancer, choreographer and teacher in New York City.
He has worked with Bruce Wood Dance Project, Comtemporary Ballet Dallas and New York Baroque Dance Company. His own work has been shown in New York City, Montreal, Dallas and Varna, Bulgaria. Beitman recently premiered his newest work as a part of "With or WIthout Me," curated by Jack Ferver at Dance New Amsterdam in New York City.
The dance school will be making four special wishes come true by having special honorary guests from the Make-A-Wish Foundation (children with life-threathening illnesses) attend the show and meet the cast and professional New York city dancers following the performance.
Tickets can be purchased by calling 940-1250, at the door or at the Copy Rite locations in Hollidaysburg, Altoona and Roaring Spring.
It is recommended to purchase tickets in advance. The cost is $12 general admission.
The doors will open at 6 p.m., and the show begins at 7 p.m. For more information, visit www.altoonadancetheatre.com.