School of dance prepares for Christmas ballet

Published 12:01 am Thursday, December 6, 2007

NATCHEZ — ‘Twas the night before performance, and Middleton School of Dance’s performers were completing their final practice Wednesday night.

The Middleton School of dance, directed by Ann Gaude, will present the ballet “‘Twas the Night Before Christmas” tonight at 7 at the Natchez City Auditorium.

Tonight’s performance will be the second annual production of “‘Twas the Night Before Christmas,” and will be performed by a cast of 100 dancers ranging in age from 5-years-old to 18-years-old.

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Dancing the part of the Snow Queen, Madeline Jeansonne, 18, said she saw the ballet as a herald of the season.

“We all enjoy doing this Christmas recital because it brings the holiday spirit to town,” she said.

Rebecca Seale, 16, who plays a Jinglebell and a Reindeer, agreed.

“It’s fun to show people what we have been working on this year,” she said.

Allie Wilson, 17, playing the part of a candycane, said she is looking forward to this year’s performance because of the changes that had been incorporated into it.

“I’m really excited because we’re bringing a lot of new things to the show this year and because it brings the community and our families together,” she said.

At 18-years-old, Joanna David, who plays Rudolph in the production, said she still enjoys ballet after more than a decade of study.

“It’s really a way I can express myself,” she said.

The ballet tells the story of several children who were surprised by dancing toys on Christmas Eve, and when they went to sleep, dream fairies, who sent them visions of sugarplums, candy canes and peppermints, visit them.

Outside, the Snow Queen, her princesses and snowflakes made merry, and Santa’s bells and elves made preparations for St. Nicholas’ appearance.

When Santa made his appearance that night, he wound up all of the mechanical toys and sent them dancing before making his exit.

With the next day’s dawning, the Christmas Fairy woke the children and they danced with joy when greeted with Christmas.

Tickets will be available at the door, $10 for adults and $5 for students.