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The Hammond Ballet holds local auditions for a classic production

By Annie Goodman
On August 29, 2017

Auditions for the Hammond Ballet Company’s performance of “The Nutcracker” will be held on Sept. 9. The main stage performance will be held at the Columbia Theatre for the Performing Arts on Dec. 8 and 9. Courtesy of Hammond Ballet Company

Hammond Ballet Company will be holding auditions for their performance of “The Nutcracker.”

“All levels of dancers are invited to audition,” said Linda Ross, treasurer of Hammond Ballet Company. “Character and acting roles are available for boys. Boys interested in these roles should attend the 12 to 1:45 sessions. Boys interested in dancing roles should attend the audition for their age group.”

The auditions will be Sept. 9 at A Touch of Class Performing Arts, 135 S. 6th Street, Ponchatoula, LA with ages four to seven from 11 a.m. to 12 p.m., ages eight to 11 from 12 p.m. to 1:45 p.m. and ages 12 and up from 2 p.m. to 3:45 p.m. Registration will begin 30 minutes before the auditions.

“Dancers who dance on pointe should bring pointe shoes,” said Ross. “Girls should wear leotard, tights, ballet shoes and have hair in a bun. Audition fee is $20 cash.  Parents will attend an informational meeting while dancers are in auditions. Cast lists will be emailed to dancers and studios within a week of auditions.”

Hammond Ballet Company puts on this performance every year.

“‘The Nutcracker’ is produced by Hammond Ballet Company, a non-profit community dance company organized to give performance opportunities to area dancers,” said Ross. “This will be our 21st annual performance.”

The performance mixes dancers of various skill levels from local areas and professionally.

“Dancers in ‘The Nutcracker’ are given an opportunity to perform in a classic ballet with other area dancers and professional dancers in a professional setting at a real theater,” said Ross. “It has become an annual holiday community event. The performance has been promoted to main stage status at the Columbia Theatre for the Performing Arts as part of their season.”

Many aspects of dance and performance will be judged at the auditions.

“I do know the dancers are put through a warm up at the barre and instructed in particular movements and pieces of the choreography,” said Ross. “Some roles are more acting than dancing, i.e., the mice, soldiers, etc. The role cast will depend on the ability and technique knowledge of the dancer. Stage presence is also considered since the ballet tells a story.”

The performance will be in December with morning and evening performances.

“Performances will be held at the Columbia Theatre for the Performing Arts, 220 E. Thomas Street in Hammond,” said Ross. “Performances are Dec. 8 and 9. The school performance will be at 10 a.m. on Dec. 8 with evening performances at 7 p.m. on Dec. 8 and 9.”

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