Delaware Ballet to stage ‘The Nutcracker’ this weekend

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Members of the Delaware Ballet company will star in “The Nutcracker” this weekend at Delaware State University. (Submitted photo)

DOVER –– This weekend the Delaware Ballet is back for its 24th annual presentation of “The Nutcracker.”

Nearly 50 performers ages 5 through 40 will take the stage beginning tonight to portray the classic Christmas tale under the direction of Delaware Ballet Artistic Director Brittany Faulkingham.

“It’s a little terrifying but it’s also very exciting because all our dancers are great and I have a great support system here. And if I have any problems, I can go to my dad for advice,” she said.

Ms. Faulkingham is serving her second year as artistic director, following in her father, Dan Kaiser’s, footsteps. He retired two years ago after directing the Kent County-based Delaware Ballet for 22 years.

All lead roles are danced by members of the Delaware Ballet’s company and for the first time in the company’s history, there is not a male guest performer in “The Nutcracker.”

“We had a new male dancer come in last year and were very impressed with him,” said Delaware Ballet board member Elizabeth DuRoss of Anthony Jumao-As.

“He’s a great dancer and a strong partner, able to do all the lifts very well.”

The company has been rehearsing since the week after Labor Day while the intermediate dancers started rehearsals in early October.

Although the focus of preparation has been on dance for the last couple months, the past week or two, attention has been added to costumes and sets.

“Our performance is at DelState which has a large stage and really allows us to use an elaborate set,” Ms. DuRoss said.

Preparing the sets and costumes takes plenty of help from family members of the dancers and friends of the Delaware Ballet, some of whom also participate in non-dancing roles.

“We have a wonderful cast this year and are lucky to have so many dedicated people helping us prepare for our performances,” Ms. DuRoss said.

Show times are tonight at 7 and Saturday at 2 and 7 p.m. Tickets are $15 for adults and $10 for children 12 and under and are available at the door of Delaware State University’s Education and Humanities Theater in Dover.

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