Every year brings a brand new look to an aged tradition

The familiar melody of Tchaikovsky’s The Nutcracker will fill the Performing Arts Center at Templeton High School as local dancers adorned in sparkling costumes glide across the stage in the Christmas ballet at the Performing Arts Center at Templeton High School in December.

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“It’s a really good way to get into the holiday spirit,” said Gabriella Trevisan, this year’s Sugar Plum Fairy.

Every year, the holiday season is kicked off with the annual performance of “The Nutcracker” ballet. The Christmas story of Clara, her uncle Drosselmeyer, the Prince, Sugar Plum Fairy and the fantasy world is a Christmas tradition that North County Dance and Performing Arts Foundation brings to the area.

While The Nutcracker ballet will be the same production that audiences have grown to love, each year is a bit different based on the dancer in each role.

Nutcracker Dancer 04“It’s always different in regards to the cast and the dancers that get cast in the part,” The Nutcracker Artistic Director Cheryle Armstrong said. “We try to choreograph to the talents of the dancers.”

Lisa Deyo, who has been a resident choreographer for many years, will choreograph this year’s ballet. Joining the cast this year, Armstrong said, are several local celebrities, including some physicians and public servants, including Dr. Mark Kowall.

“I am very excited to take on the role of Mr. Stahlbaum,” said Kowall. “Last year, as one of Clara’s uncles, I had a fantastic experience. I was incredibly impressed with the dedicated and hardworking cast. This year, I am once again looking forward to being on the stage with the real dancer in the family, Katie, and with my wife, Margie, who debuts as an aunt.”

Nutcracker Dancer 03This holiday season’s ballet will take place the second weekend of December. Student night and open dress rehearsal will be held on Thursday, Dec. 7 at 7 p.m. The following performances will happen on Friday, Dec. 8 at 7:30 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 9 at 11:30 a.m. and 4 p.m. and Sunday, Dec. 10 at 1 and 5:30 p.m.

At this time, the role of the Cavalier has not been cast. Armstrong said she is currently looking for a dancer for that role.

“I try my best to bring in someone who is professional and willing to work with a student, because it’s a learning experience,” she said. “I have a few candidates, but have not hired anyone yet.”

Get a preview of the ballet and the dancers during Paso Robles Main Street Association’s annual Elegant Evening Downtown on Saturday, Nov. 11 from 5 to 8 p.m.

During Elegant Evening, dancers for The Nutcracker will be live mannequins, creating different scenes in different business windows. Tickets for Student Night are $10 for youth and $25 for adults. For the other performances, tickets are $24 for children and seniors and $28 for adults. Tickets are on sale at 2017nutcracker.brown papertickets.com.

For more info go to www.ncdpaf.org