Drive-by ‘Nutcracker Vignettes’ return to East Portland

Learn more about the performances of this ballet school, where many outer East Portland students attend. And, see a live, outdoor performance, the evening of December 11 …

As dancers at the Classical Ballet Academy prepare for their upcoming outdoor performance of Nutcracker Vignettes – gathering for a scene in the second half are characters Clara, the Nutcracker, and some “Party Sweets”, as well as the Red King and Dancing Dolls from the show’s party scene.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton

From all over our area, Classical Ballet Academy is the school of dance where people come, from toddlers to adults, to learn this discipline of terpsichorean arts.

During the fall months, in their Sellwood studios, dancers were rehearsing for their upcoming season of dance programs – including their outdoor performance open to all, scheduled for December 11, 5-9 p.m., called Nutcracker Vignettes.

Classical Ballet Academy’s Director Sarah Rigles (far right) coaches dancers during a November rehearsal.

“That evening, eight Eastmoreland neighborhood homes will featuring life-size outdoor Nutcracker scenes on their front lawns,” explained the academy’s Director, Sarah Rigles. “These ‘living art’ installations feature professional lighting, music, props, sets – and, of course, dancers!”

Depending on the weather, people can drive by or walk past the scenes, on a map-guided route that should be easier for spectators to follow than last year. It’s about a two-mile drive or walk to visit all vignettes. For information about obtaining the map, visit their Nutcracker Vignettes webpage: CLICK HERE.

There is no charge to navigate the route and see the performances, but donations are gratefully accepted.

These dancers pose as they rehearse the “party scene” from the first act of The Nutcracker.

Full stage shows also presented in December
“And, we’re also again performing our full schedule at Portland State University (PSU),” Rigles announced. “We’re really looking forward to it, because we haven’t been in the theater there for about a year and a half.”

In PSU’s theater, Classical Ballet Academy dancers will perform four shows of The Nutcracker and two performances of Alice in Winterland – a dance adaptation of the book and play Alice in Wonderland – starting December 16.

While rehearsing the The Nutcracker’s “Waltz of the Flowers”, the performer of the “Chocolate Covered Strawberry” joins the dancers for a photo.

To attend the PSU shows, everyone – including their cast, crew, and audience – needs to show that they’re vaccinated, or have had a negative COVID test, and also must wear a face mask, she affirmed. Note: Tickets to the PSU shows are available only at the university’s Box Office: CLICK HERE to open their official ticket page.

© 2021 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News™



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