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Alice in Albany

By   /   December 2, 2011  /   Comments Off

By Jessica Cliett
Does Alice really live in Wonderland or does she live in Albany??? Ballet Theatre South is presenting Alice in Wonderland December 2, 2011 through December 4, 2011 at the Albany Municipal Auditorium. Choreographers Leslie Hodges of Camilla and Charles Hagan of Tallahassee have teamed up to choreograph the classic story based on Lewis Carroll’s book.
It all officially began in May when tryouts for Ballet Theatre South were held at Murphy Dance Studio. Girls and boys over the age of 8 years old, who have had at least three consecutive years of ballet, tried out for coveted roles in the performance. It finally came down to the three main companies; Youth, Junior, and Senior, along with the main characters of Alice played by Madeline Leach of Albany, the White Rabbit played by Ashlyn Wilkerson of Morgan, the Cheshire Cat played by Bethany DeMott of Albany, the Caterpillar played by Morgan Kirkland of Dawson, the Mad Hatter played by Rachel Lockhart of Albany, the March Hare played by Tunisha Hayes of Albany, and the Dormouse played by Tara Das of Albany. Guest artists include Chelsea Hodges of Camilla, the Knave of Hearts played by Adam Perry of Tallahassee, and the Queen of Hearts played by Stacy Mathis, co-owner of Murphy Dance Studio in Albany. After casting, dancers practiced for three months in preparation for this production. Ballet Theatre South also had many volunteers designing costumes and props for the ballet and providing other support roles for this first class production.
Zan Twiggs, president of BTS stated “We chose Alice in Wonderland because the Ballet Theatre South board and the artistic director Carol Mathis wanted to do a production that would appeal to children of all ages. We knew that ‘Alice’ would be a visually exciting show with fun choreography, colorful costumes, and dramatic scenery. And thank you to all of the Ballet Theatre South board and the parent volunteers, we could not have done it without you!”
For those who may be unfamiliar with the story, it opens with Alice sitting in her garden reading a book when she sees a white rabbit wearing a coat hurrying past.  Alice decides to follow him and falls down a rabbit hole finding herself surrounded by characters she never could have imagined.  Traveling through Wonderland, Alice meets the unpredictable Mad Hatter, a vanishing Cheshire Cat, and the demanding Queen of Hearts among many other mysterious characters. After experiencing numerous adventures in which she finds herself growing large and small, then eventually attending a trial where the Knave of Hearts is accused of stealing the Queen’s tarts, Alice wakes up to find herself back in her garden only to wonder if it had all been a dream.
In addition to whimsical costumes and scenery, the exceptional choreography, contemporary music and local talent will bring Lewis Carroll’s characters to life.  Audiences of all ages will enjoy this magical ballet.  Opening night of Ballet Theatre South’s production of Alice in Wonderland is Friday, December 2 at 7:30 pm. Tickets are available at the door for $10. Matinee performances are Saturday, December 3 and Sunday, December 4 at 2:30 pm. Tickets for matinee shows are $15. Tickets can be purchased by phone at 349-3343.
**Jessica Cliett is an eighth grade homeschool student from Terrell County.

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