Tis’ the season of sugar and spice and everything nice. This includes visions of sugar plums for Pacific Festival Ballet as they prepare their 24th year of “The Nutcracker” at the Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza.
Since the theatre’s inaugural season in 1994, Pacific Festival Ballet has remained faithful by bringing world-class productions to life each year with a cast of 150 dancers, guaranteed snowfall and celebrity guest artists from New York City Ballet, Joffrey Ballet and San Francisco Ballet. The cast is enhanced by professional Los Angeles-based dancers as well as auditioned students and adults from PFB’s training school, California Dance Theatre in Westlake Village.
The tradition of “The Nutcracker” overflows from stage into our community, as PFB believes firmly in bringing dance and the arts to those who may not have the resources to set foot in a theatre. Each year, outreach performances are presented by PFB and the Kids in the Arts program exclusively for local children and Title 1 schools. With budget cuts affecting arts education, this opportunity introduces children to the theatre and performing arts firsthand.
Another local organization that holds the heart of Pacific Festival Ballet is Support for the Kids, founded by Lynda Miller. Each year donated tickets bring upward of 100 individuals to attend “The Nutcracker” or PFB’s spring ballet.
In an effort to bring the holiday spirit to those who cannot attend a theatre performance, select cast members share the magic of “The Nutcracker” in a charming preview show. These performances are brought to children at Casa Pacifica as well as seniors at University Village to enhance their Christmas celebrations.
Kim Maselli, artistic director of Pacific Festival Ballet feels these outreaches are vital.
“The performing arts have a way of crossing boundaries and uniting us all,” says Kim. “Dance and music give us a common voice and the ability to find joy in a form that is universal.”
Each year, PFB’s “The Nutcracker” is launched with a renewed spirit. Cast members bring a fresh energy to familiar characters and the ballet once again comes to life. To step into the magic of the “The Nutcracker,” join PFB on Saturday, December 16 and Sunday, December 17 at 2 and 7 p.m., as this year’s cast and New York City Ballet guest artists Tiler Peck and Gonzalo Garcia grace the stage at the Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza.
Tickets are available at the box office at 2100 E. Thousand Oaks Blvd., Ticketmaster at 800.745.3000 or online at PacFestBallet.org.