The Villager November 10, 1999

Nutcracker Opens December 17 at College

The tradition continues as Festival Ballet presents its annual Nutcracker production, complete with elaborate costumes, on-stage snowfall, professional guest artists, and Tchaikovsky's renowned score, Dec. 17th through the 19th at the Beautiful, Montgomery College Theater.

With professional Guest Artists, Festival Ballet Company members, and students from the acclaimed Woodlands Dance Academy, Artistic Director Deborah Rayburn has created this holiday favorite fashioned after the concept of Lev Ivanov, the Great Russian who choreographed the very first Nutcracker over 100 years ago. The beautiful staging is complemented by the lavish set and costume designs.  

Talented young dancers from The Woodlands, greater South Montgomery County, and Northern Harris County have auditioned for special roles in Festival Ballet’s production of ‘The Nutcracker”. Open auditions were held at the Woodlands Dance Academy. Hopeful dancers and anxious parents waited for the results as auditions were held throughout the day. Selections were made and the cast list was posted.  The young dancers must make a commitment to an elaborate lineup of activities. Costume sizing and fittings, character and choreographic rehearsals, staging and working with the pre-professional dancers, and professional Guest Artists of Festival Ballet, combine to create a heavy calendar of activities for even the most organized student.  

The Guest Artist's for this production includes John Brinkman (Tulsa Ballet Theater) as The Sugar Cavalier, Durrell Martin (Houston Dance Company) as Prince Zephyr, Barbara LeGualt (Tennessee Festival Ballet) as The Sugar Plum Fairy on December 17th  & 18th, and Mary Beth Arrington (Tulsa Ballet Theater) as The Sugar Plum Fairy on December 18th, & 19th.  

Tickets may be purchased at Ticketmaster outlets, charged by phone at 713-629-3700 or bought online at