Monday, November 6, 2017

Holiday event & book launch for Nutcracked by Susan Adrian

For my local students and their families!
On Sunday, November 12th, Jennifer Ward, the owner of my favorite dance shop, Priscilla's Dancewear in Montrose, will host a delightful holiday party for kids and their parents which will include an appearance by Susan Adrian, the author of NUTCRACKED, a charming book for kids. She'll be on hand to talk about her life as a dancer, to offer some advice to young dancers and to sign copies of her book (makes a great gift!).
The Montrose area is a lovely little town with coffee shops and bookstores and lots of locally-owned businesses. It's a great place to do a pre-holiday shopping trip, before or after the fun event at Priscilla's. 
To give you a taste of what's to come at the party, I asked Susan Adrian to share a bit about herself and what her book is all about. Thanks so much, Susan!
Nutcracker Life
By Susan Adrian
I first saw The Nutcracker when I was 7 years old. I watched the big tree grow and grow on stage, lit by Clara's single candle, to Tchaikovsky's haunting score, and I was absolutely entranced. I wanted to be part of that magic so badly. I told my mother after the show that I wanted to be Clara.
I got ballet lessons for Christmas that year.
I worked hard at the small local studio. When I was 10 I auditioned for The Nutcracker with the Sacramento Ballet, the same company I'd seen. I got the part of a second-cast Marshmallow Child. That Christmas I got lessons at the Sacramento Ballet Company, 45 minutes each way.
The next year I got Party Child, second cast. The third year I got Party Child first cast, and a lamb in the Shepherdess dance. The next year, when I was 13, I got to be Clara, in the same theater I'd watched it.
I have a vivid memory of being in a performance, in my nightgown with my single candle, with mice lurking behind me around the stage. A little kid in the audience called out clearly, "Watch out, Clara!" That was the dream come true. I was making the magic real for others now.
Years later, I don't dance anymore, but I found another way to make Nutcracker magic real for kids. I wrote a book about being Clara in The Nutcracker, being 12 or 13, and having to balance that with the rest of your life, your family and friendships…but now there's real, more tangible magic too. This Clara—Georgie—gets drawn into the Nutcracker's world every time she dances with her company's antique Nutcracker. The Nutcracker is in real danger, and now it's trickling through to her real life too. Georgie has to save everyone while still keeping up with rehearsals.
NUTCRACKED has magic, ballet, family, and friendship struggles and successes. For me, it's a full circle. I'm just living my Nutcracker dream in a different way now.  

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