New Paltz Ballet Theatre will perform its 18th annual The Nutcracker at the historic Bardavon 1869 Opera House in Poughkeepsie on Saturday, December 13 at 2 and 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, December 14 at 3 p.m. New Paltz Ballet Theater artistic directors Lisa and Peter Naumann bring local ballet students and professional dancers from New York City Ballet together for the performances. While the Theater has been performing this classic ballet for nearly two decades, the Naumann’s have managed to keep it fresh by ensuring that each performance is as magical as the last.
“This year, for the first time, the coveted part of Marie will be performed on pointe,” said Lisa Naumann. “Peter and I were inspired to make this change because of the exceptional talent and potential of two young dancers at New Paltz School of Ballet.” This change brings a new depth to the part of Marie and her Prince, which will now be danced by the male professional dancer from New York City Ballet.
Theater-goers will see either Alexandria Diemoz or Elizabeth Pullman playing the role of Marie. Both girls are taking on the part for the second time, however, with the new change of getting to partner with a professional dancer on stage, they are finding this to be a completely different and challenging experience.
Diemoz is a seventh-grade student at John G. Borden Middle School in Wallkill. This is her first time dancing in The Nutcracker on pointe and being picked to do this brand new version of Marie was completely unexpected. “Nobody expected Marie to be on pointe this year,” said Diemoz. “I was completely surprised when chosen for this part.”
Pullman, a ninth-grade student from Poughkeepsie Day School, looks forward to being able to portray the emotion of Marie in a whole new way. “Playing Marie involves being able to dramatize through dance what it’s like to fall in love,” said Pullman. “Now that I’m older I can show these feelings much better than I could before.”
For tickets, call (845) 331-1613 or (845) 255-0044.