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Alexandra

Ballet San Jose's Coppelia

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Another early alert:

BALLET SAN JOSE SILICON VALLEY NEWS

Dennis Nahat, Artistic Director

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: July 23, 2003

MEDIA CONTACT: Lee Kopp,(408) 288-2820 x 210

NOTE: JPEG photo attached; 300dpi, 5 X 7.

Raymond Rodriguez (as Franz) and Karen Gabay (as Swanhilda) in Dennis

Nahat's "Coppélia", one of three ballets in Ballet San Jose's new Children's

Series. Photo By: Robert Shomler

Ballet San Jose Silicon Valley Announces Children's Series

"Nutcracker", "Coppélia", "Silly Simon" Designed for Young Audiences

Ballet San Jose Silicon Valley has announced the creation of a new

Children's Series of short ballets designed to introduce young audiences to

the magic of storytelling through dance. The three-ballet program will

include child-friendly versions of Dennis Nahat's "The Nutcracker" and

"Coppélia" and a ballet entitled "Silly Simon", choreographed by Lise la

Cour, based on a folk tale by Hans Christian Andersen. The ballets will

be produced with full sets and costumes, and run approximately one-hour and

fifteen-minutes each. The productions are available as a subscription

series only.

The Children's Series version of "The Nutcracker" (Sunday, December 14th at

1:30pm) will be performed by the professional company of Ballet San Jose

Silicon Valley dancers with full sets, costumes, and orchestra. "The first

act of the ballet is a perfect short story for young children," says

choreographer and Company Artistic Director Dennis Nahat. "We meet a young

girl named Maria at a Christmas party for her family and friends. Godfather

Drosselmeyer arrives with gifts for everyone, including a very special

nutcracker for Maria. Drosselmeyer tells Maria and all the guests that the

nutcracker is really an enchanted prince. An evil sorcerer in the shape of a

Mouse King has cast a spell on the Prince, and he can only be saved by a

brave young girl. Much later that night, after the party is over and

everyone has gone to bed, Maria awakens to an astonishing sight. The

Christmas tree has grown to a towering height. The Nutcracker Prince is now

taller than she, and he is fighting with an enormous Mouse King. Through

her bravery Maria saves the Prince and together they fly off into the clouds

on the back of a beautiful snow bird. The Nutcracker is one of my favorite

ballets," says Nahat.

"Coppélia" (Saturday, February 7th at 1:30pm) is the story of a village

toymaker who carves marvelous life-size puppets. One day he creates a

particularly beautiful puppet girl and he names her Coppélia. The toymaker

sets his new creation high on a balcony overlooking the town square so that

the sun will dry her newly painted enameled eyes. But Coppélia is all too

lifelike, and Franz, the most mischievous boy in the village, begins to

flirt with this new girl in town. Love-struck, Franz creeps into the

toymaker's workshop to find the beautiful girl, but instead he meets with a

disagreeable surprise. Meanwhile Swanhilda, Franz's sweetheart, has seen

her boyfriend flirting with Coppélia and decides to confront her. So she,

too, sneaks into the workshop. The confusion and merriment that follows

will delight audiences of all ages. This three-act story will reworked to a

very child-friendly one-hour and fifteen-minutes and will be danced by the

professional company with full sets, costumes and orchestra.

"Silly Simon" (five performances: Thursday, April 22nd through Sunday, April

25) is based on a tale by the great Danish poet and storyteller, Hans

Christian Andersen. Lise la Cour, formerly of Royal Danish Ballet and

currently the Director of Ballet San Jose Silicon Valley SCHOOL, will set

her choreography on members of the School's Professional and Open

divisions..

The story follows the adventures of 'Silly' Simon and his two clever

brothers. The Princess Royal is seeking a husband, but insists that she

will only marry a man who can speak for himself. The two clever brothers

ride off on their fine horses to try their luck at wooing the beautiful

Princess. But Simon has no horse of his own so he sets off riding a billy

goat. On the way Simon collects "presents" for the Princess--a dead crow,

an old wooden shoe, and a pocket full of mud. His clever brothers have a

good laugh and then spur their horses toward the castle and leave "Silly

Simon" far behind. "If you want to find out what happens, you have to come

to the ballet", says Ms. la Cour.

"The Nutcracker" and "Coppélia" (one performance each) will be staged at San

Jose Center for the Performing Arts. "Silly Simon" will be given five

matinee and early evening performances at San Jose Repertory Theatre.

Subscription packages range from $42 to $114 for children and $51 to $129

for adults. For additional information or to order subscriptions, call the

Ballet Box Office at (408) 288-2800 or visit the web site at

www.balletsanjose.org

***

FACT SHEET

BALLET SAN JOSE SILICON VALLEY

Children's Series

At a Glance

(Currently Available by Subscription Only)

"The Nutcracker"

(First Act Only)

Sunday, December 14th at 1:30pm

San Jose Center for the Performing Arts

255 Almaden Boulevard in downtown San Jose

Choreography: Dennis Nahat

Music: "The Nutcracker"

Composer: Peter Tchaikovsky

Scenery and Costumes: David Guthrie

First Performed: Cleveland Ballet on December 12, 1979 at the Music Hall,

Cleveland, Ohio.

"Coppélia"

(Specially Edited Version)

Saturday, February 7th at 1:30pm

San Jose Center for the Performing Arts

255 Almaden Boulevard in downtown San Jose

Choreography: Dennis Nahat

(Based on the Ballet of 1870 by Arthur Saint-Léon)

Music: "Coppélia"

Composer: Léo Delibes

Scenery and Costumes: David Guthrie

First Performed: San Jose Cleveland Ballet on October 16, 1981 at the Hanna

Theatre, Cleveland, Ohio.

"Silly Simon"

(American Premiere)

Thursday, April 22nd at 6:30pm

Friday, April 23rd at 6:30pm

Saturday, April 24th at 11:00am

Saturday, April 24th at 1:30pm

Sunday, April 25th at 1:30pm

* San Jose Repertory Theatre

101 Paseo de San Antonio in downtown San Jose

Scenario & Choreography: Lise la Cour

Music: Commissioned score

Composer: Bent Fabricius-Bjerre

Scenery and Costumes: Bjórn Wiinblad

First Performed: Royal Danish Ballet, October, 1989 at the Royal Theatre,

Copenhagen, Denmark.

* Note: Special location for "Silly Simon" only

Tickets:

Subscriptions are available from $42 to $114 for children;

$51 to $129 for adults.

Box Office: (408) 288-2800

Web Site: www.balletsanjose.org

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