Just over 20 dancers from Green Mountain Performing Arts Waitsfield studio will be performing in Hip Hop Nutcracka 2012 Remix on Saturday, December 22, at 4 and 7 p.m. at Harwood Union High School.
From snowflakes and Mother Ginger peeps to mice, Waitsfield students will be part of a cast of characters featuring nearly 100 students from GMPA. Professional dancers, GMPA faculty and even parents round out the cast. Ernest "E-Knock” Phillips, GMPA hip hop director of MTV fame, will play the role of the Nutcracka.
Students from GMPA’s Waitsfield studio are Sarah Bevacqui, Sarah Boyden, Julia Brophy, Liam Devereux, Sage Devereux, Emma Caffry, Damon Foster, Oliver Hammond, Molly Hans, Amalia Iskandarova, Laili Iskandarova, Anna Jamieson, Anna Jarecki, Aliza Jernigan, Kennedy Kelaher, Caleb Kingsbury, Joseph Kouassi, Celia Lawton, Sasha Lawton, Isabelle Maranda, McKinley Pierce, Carly Sargent, and Olivia White.
Parent Lana Kenyon will play the role of the Nutcracka mom. Kenyon danced on and off through her childhood from the age of 6 but had lost touch with dance as an adult. She renewed her love of dance through a class at GMPA. Last year Kenyon found an opportunity to get back on stage when she was invited to be a part of the parents’ crew in the party scene of Hip Hop Nutcracka.
"It's such a good experience to be a part of a show again....and to be on stage with great dancers and with my child," she said.
Damon Foster, Kenyon's 8-year-old-son, is a mouse this year. This is his first time in the Nutcracka. Two other parents in the party scene are enjoying the same fun.
Waitsfield has played an interesting role in GMPA's Nutcracka. The first production was staged by GMPA founder Laurie Flaherty at the Valley Players and show manager Martina Price had her first ballet recital in the Waitsfield Elementary gym, where GMPA now holds its Waitsfield classes. "It is fun to watch the kids thrive in dance at the same location and wonder where they will be in 30 years,” says Price. “What kind of Nutcracka will they come up with then?” she asks.
GMPA’s Hip Hop Nutcracka production is now in its third season. This year’s remix incorporates the story of a ballerina, Claire, who does not fit in with her hip hop family. Eventually, Claire learns to enjoy hip hop and appreciate her own talent.
The 90-minute show will entertain all ages. Tickets are available online at www.greenmountainperformingarts.org. For information, call (802) 244-8600.