Mountaintop Area Dancers To Appear In Moscow Ballet’s Great Russian Nutcracker

The renowned company, The Moscow Ballet will be performing the classic Great Russian Nutcracker at the F. M. Kirby Center in Wilkes-Barre on Wednesday, December 9th as part of its international tour. Moscow Ballet’s company of almost 40 dancers is the only internationally touring ballet group to perform to critical acclaim in over 75 North American cities annually. The renowned, award-winning principal dancers and corps de ballet thrill audiences with their expertise, dramatic expression and stunning leaps, drops and turns.

The production is known for its dedication to world peace placing Act II in the “Land of Peace and Harmony,” featuring a cannon that shoots roses and a stunning 2-dancer “Dove of Peace” with a 20’ wingspan. All ages feel the spirit of the season at Great Russian Nutcracker performances through the beauty of romantic hand-sewn costumes, 9 shimmering backdrops with authentic splashes of Russian history and fanciful effects such as; life-sized Matrushka (Nesting) Dolls; a 3-headed Rat King and a Troika Sleigh ride through the magical Snow Forest (with falling snow) escorted by Father Christmas and Snow Maiden.

The production once again will be featuring local dancers in supporting roles. This past September, prima ballerina Olga Aru from the company visited the area and conducted auditions at the Joan Harris Centre. Sixty-five regional performers from five area dance schools were cast in a variety of parts including, party guests, snowflakes, mice, angels and many of the variations of the famed Tchaikovsky work. The students come from four counties across Northeastern Pennsylvania and train weekly at the Harris Centre in Luzerne.

The Moscow ballet hired area choreographer and instructor Elisabeth Harris to serve as the regional coordinator and trainer for the production. Ms. Harris has been working with the international company since August of 2000. During her career she has personally has choreographed over 25 ballets such as The Sleeping Beauty, Swan Lake, Don Quixote, Coppelia and La Fille Mal Gardee. Ms. Harris has trained literally thousands of dancers and her students have gone on to performed with the Joffrey Ballet, the American Ballet Theater, the New York City Ballet and the Tampa Ballet and other renown companies.

Wearing intricately detailed costumes, many with shimmering Swarovski crystals, the award-winning principal dancers and corps de ballet bring Tchaikovsky’s master score and the holiday season to life! . The Great Russian Nutcracker will be staged at Wednesday, December 9th at 7 p. m. at the F. M. Kirby Center in Wilkes-Barre. For more information visit the Kirby’s website at kirbycenter.orgor call 570-826-1100. Groups of ten or more and Girl Scout troops receive discounts; call 800-320-1733.