Magical ballet set for Friday, Saturday at Children’s Dance Theatre Company
Pirates, fairies and the Lost Boys return to the stage this week as the Hot Springs Children’s Dance Theatre Company puts on its first show in over a year.
Performances of “Peter Pan” will be held Friday and Saturday at LakePointe City Church, 1343 Albert Pike Road.
One year ago, the theater company was about to hold a performance of “Cinderella” when the
COVID-19 pandemic forced them to cancel the show. Their annual performance of “The Nutcracker” would have followed in the winter, but was also canceled.
Now the troupe is back with “Peter Pan,” with a 7 p.m. performance Friday and a 1 p.m. performance Saturday.
Based on the play by J.M. Barrie, the show is an adaptation of the play into a ballet. Artistic director and president of the theater company, Edmond Cooper, said “you do tell the story but it’s more of a dreamlike experience for the audience.”
“So there’s no actual speaking parts, it’s all done with movement,” he said.
This will be the second time they have performed “Peter Pan” after originally performing it in
2016, Cooper said. “It did really, really well,” he said, referring to the earlier production. He said they have added new sets, special effects and costumes for this show.
Abigail Robertson will play Peter Pan and Hailey Dabbs plays Wendy. Cooper said they will be joined by 15 other young dancers in the show, which is less than normal for the production.
“There’s usually, in a performance, anywhere from 35 to
40 performers,” he said, noting each performer in this show will play multiple characters.
Cooper said they held auditions for the show in February, and have been rehearsing since. The performance was planned out before the current COVID-19 situation, so it has a smaller cast.
“The auditions were three months ago. So at that time, there were less people willing, feeling comfortable being involved with even a virtual presentation,” Cooper said.
When the theater company originally planned “Peter Pan” a few months ago, the plan was for it to be a virtual show.
“As the situation got better and better, we’ve adjusted it to be available as a recording and also as a live performance,” he said. While a recording of the show will be made available, they will not livestream the event.
He said they planned to livestream it until they realized how well the ticket sales were going. Those wishing to watch the shows should pre-order them, he said. In an effort to keep performers and viewers safe, they will limit seating to “well below half” of the venue’s 500 capacity, he said, noting they are getting close to that number of tickets sold.
The seats will also be kept socially distant from each other with people sitting with “just friends and family,” he said. “We’re going to ask the people ‘Please, wear a mask.’”
The theater company plans a November performance of “The Nutcracker” this year, and Cooper said they will finally do “Cinderella” next year.
For “Peter Pan,” preferred adult tickets are $30 and standard adult tickets are $20. Preferred child tickets are $15, and standard child tickets are $10. Children younger than 5 years old are admitted for free, but they still must have reservations.