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Wednesday, November 25, 2009

WASHINGTON, DC – The Washington Ballet (TWB) will premiere Artistic Director Septime Webre’s The Nutcracker at the THEARC Theater, 1901 Mississippi Avenue SE, Washington DC with five performances from December 3-5, 2009. In light of the loss of a $1 million grant, TWB was faced with making programmatic cuts, including its presentation of The Nutcracker at THEARC. Building Bridges Across the River (BBAR) teamed up with FedEx and the SunDial Foundation to secure $50,000 in funding to make this possible.

“We are so grateful to BBAR and all the other sponsors who made it possible for us to continue our tradition of premiering The Nutcracker at THEARC,” says Mr. Webre. “The Washington Balletis committed to the Ward 8 community and is thrilled to give our SE Campus students the opportunity to perform alongside our professional company again this year.”

W. Christopher Smith, chairman of the Building Bridges Across the River Board of Directors, is grateful to fellow board members FedEx and Lynne (and Joseph) Horning for joining him and his wife, Lisa, in helping to fund The Washington Ballet’s performance of The Nutcracker at THEARC.

Mr. Smith said, “Without their support and the support of Horning Brothers, Steinway Piano Gallery of Washington, DC, Potomac Orthopaedics Associates Chartered, Industrial Bank, Lottery Technology Enterprises, Giant, Verizon, Alma and Colin Powell, Vernon and Ann Jordan, LISC, and Carter and Melissa Cafritz, THEARC would not be able to host this magnificent production this year.”

Additionally, the National Endowment for the Arts provided a $20,000 grant, SunDial Foundation purchased $500 worth of tickets to be given to children whose families could not afford to buy tickets to The Nutcracker, and the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities provided a $3,775 grant.

Mr. Webre’s vintage take on The Nutcracker transports audience members back in time to historic Washington and an A-list party on the Potomac. Starring George Washington as the heroic Nutcracker and King George III as the villainous Rat King, the production sparkles with swirling snowflakes and shimmering cherry blossoms. This year’s Nutcracker features TWB’s Company and Studio Company artists alongside 350 students from its three school campuses in NW Washington, SE Washington, and Alexandria, Virginia.

More than 50 of the dancers performing onstage are enrolled in the program at The Washington Ballet @ THEARC and were chosen through an open audition process. They range in age from 6-18 and have been cast as mushrooms, sugar plum pages, frontier girls, snow angels, and clowns.

Tickets for The Nutcracker at the THEARC can be purchased at 202.889.8150 or washingtonballet.org/thearc

For more information on performance dates and times click HERE

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