Sixth annual Fox Valley Nutcracker returns to Batavia Fine Arts Centre this holiday season
Fox Valley Ballet, a 501(c)3 organization, presents "The Fox Valley Nutcracker" on Nov. 30 and Dec. 1 at the Batavia Fine Arts Centre.
The production, now in its sixth year, is continuously described as "the best Nutcracker in the Fox Valley area."
With sold-out shows every year, this beloved holiday classic features lavish sets, festive costumes, dazzling special effects, and beautiful dancing set to Tchaikovsky's original score.
The Fox Valley Nutcracker has been named Pointe Magazine's "Top 10 Must See Nutcrackers in Illinois."
"Families who live in the suburbs don't have to travel far to see a full-professional production of the Nutcracker," said Ashlie Andersen, artistic director of the Fox Valley Nutcracker. "Year after year, we like to bring new and fresh visual effects to our audience and keep them engaged throughout the entire production."
The performance brings together a community of dancers from all over the Chicago suburbs, and is a collaboration between young preprofessional dancers and professional dancers from around the world.
It showcases professional male and female dancers from Joffrey Ballet, along with Chicago's premiere ballet company, Ballet 5:8, and local dancers ages 5 through adult from 25 different dance studios in the Chicago suburbs from as far north as Algonquin to as far south as Plainfield.
There will be more than 110 dancers in the production.
"This year we will feature more unique production highlights, updates to the set, and some new choreography," Andersen said. "We also have a diversity of dancers from other places joining us."
The Fox Valley Nutcracker does more than entertain; they give back to the community and provide scholarships for dancers. In the spring, they gave five scholarships to dancers for summer dance programs.
The winners were: Ana Marie Garcia (North Aurora), Sonia Garcia (North Aurora), Aria Novak (St. Charles), Samantha Paguia (Bolingbrook), and Ella June-Wilke (Aurora). Award recipients for their fall scholarships will be announced at one of the "Nutcracker" productions this year.
In that same spirit, characters from the show visit the pediatric department at Northwestern Central DuPage Hospital in Winfield and hand out gifts to the children there.
They also perform and cook meals for the families at the Ronald McDonald House. In addition, they will be participating in the Holiday Lights Parade on Friday, Nov. 22, in Aurora.
The Fox Valley Nutcracker depends on the families of the dancers to volunteer as well as monetary donations from the community to keep the production alive. "It really does take the community to bring this spectacular performance to the stage. We are grateful to our partners and welcome the support," said Andersen. "Because we are a nonprofit, we rely on the generosity of donors. We have many opportunities for businesses to sponsor the production."
Sponsors for "The Fox Valley Nutcracker" include Northwestern Medicine at Central DuPage Hospital and Delnor, Russian Pointe, Bel Brands USA, Skytastic Media Group, and Dance Dynamics.
Performances will be held at 2 and 7 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 30, and 2 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 1, at the Batavia Fine Arts Centre, 1201 Main St.
Regular tickets are $25-$35 and tickets for children 10 and under are $20-30.
VIP seating is also available in the first three rows of the orchestra section for only $40 and include a photo op with characters after the show.
For groups of 15 or more, there is a special group rate of 10% off your total ticket price.
To purchase tickets, call (630) 937-8930 or go to www.bataviafineartscentre.org.