Whidbey Island Dance Theatre revives ‘Cinderella,’ adds new works

Leap into spring with Whidbey Island Dance Theatre’s annual Dance & Choreography Showcase.

Kiana Henny dances the title role in Whidbey Island Dance Theatre’s upcoming production of “Cinderella” in Langley.

Leap into spring with Whidbey Island Dance Theatre’s annual Dance & Choreography Showcase.

This year’s repertoire is blooming with both new visions and the redux of both modern and traditional works, including the kid-friendly, humor-infused “Cinderella.”

Tickets are on sale for the show, which will be performed at South Whidbey High School Auditorium at 2 and 7:30 p.m. Saturday, April 21 and at 2 p.m. Sunday, April 22.

This year’s guest artists include Seattle area choreographers Eva Stone and Lara Littlefield; company choreographers Jamee Pitts, Susan Campbell Sandri and Susan Vanderwood, and emerging choreographer Grace Swanson. And, in an exciting return, Australian choreographer Aaron Cash also returns with a new piece, “Rumor Has It,” to the song of the same title by Grammy Award winning artist Adele. That piece will be danced by 11 company alumni dancers including Amy Berto, Jennifer Bondelid, Nicole Falso, Elizabeth Grant, Lauren (Mack) Johnson, Leslie Larch, Jachen Mackner, Raelani McLean Kesler, Christine Monaghan, Jamee Pitts, and Susan Vanderwood.

Another celebrated choreographer, Seattle artist Stone, has created a new work for the company as well, entitled “The Gift That Came Here,” set to Bach’s “Prelude, Cello Suite No. 1” and “Prelude, from Partita No. 3” performed on ukulele. The title is the Hawaiian translation for “ukulele.”

And talented choreographer Littlefield created her dance “Forget-Me-Not” for the company dancers set to original music by her brother, composer Seth Littlefield.

All of these newly created dances will be performed by Whidbey Island Dance Theatre at other dance festivals and competitions around the region this year.

Rounding out the roster of dances, of course, is the company’s much anticipated second production of “Cinderella.”

Company artistic directors Charlene Brown and Sandri said they had always wanted to present another story ballet for island audiences, in addition to their holiday tradition of “The Nutcracker.”

“We wanted to create a storybook ballet, because we hoped it would excite children and families to come and enjoy dance,” Sandri said.

“Our version is kid-friendly — short, funny and with a nod to the Disney animated film, which is the variation that many children (and grown-ups!) expect,” she added.

“We received so many generous donations to make this happen at our auction. We are very grateful,” Brown added.

Brown and Sandri said they would like to encourage the audience to dress up for the performances. Fairy costumes, Disney princesses, ball gowns, tuxedoes and Renaissance Faire attire are encouraged.

Advanced tickets cost $20 for adults, $18 for seniors and $12 for youths

17 and younger; add an additional $2 for tickets at the door.  For tickets and information about discounts, call 341-2221 or visit www.widtonline.org.



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