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Ballet San Jose's Coppelia

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#1 Alexandra


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Posted 22 July 2003 - 12:09 PM

Another early alert:

Dennis Nahat, Artistic Director

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

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



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.

(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

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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