Fans of Tchaikovsky’s The Nutcracker will get an extra opportunity to see the classic holiday ballet this year when ButlerBallet presents six performances December 1 through 4 in Clowes Memorial Hall.

bb-pr-2016-24Show times are:
Thursday, December 1, at 7:30 PM
Friday, December 2, at 8:00 PM
Saturday, December 3, at 2:00 PM and 8:00 PM
Sunday, December 4, at noon and 5:00 PM

The second show on Sunday is a new addition, allowing each of the show’s two casts three opportunities to perform the major roles.

Tickets start at $24.50. They are on sale through Ticketmaster, the Clowes Hall box office, 317-940-6444, and

The 2016 performances of The Nutcracker will feature 37 young dancers from the central Indiana community and all 114 students in Butler’s Dance program accompanied by the Butler Ballet Orchestra and the Indianapolis Children’s Choir under the direction of Richard Auldon Clark.

“We’re really excited about this year,” said Larry Attaway, Chair of Butler University’s Dance Department. “For us, it’s always new because the dancers are all new to their roles, but it will always be the holiday classic that the ButlerBallet is famous for presenting. You’ll recognize everything.”

Audiences will see some new choreography by Visiting Assistant Professor of Dance Rosanna Ruffo, who will devise the movements for the Grand Pas de Deux and the Mother Ginger scenes, and Dance Professor Cynthia Pratt, who will choreograph the Snow scene.

For the first time in several years, the role of Clara will be danced by a student from the community. Chloe Andry, 12, from Noblesville, will take on the part.

“Chloe came to the Butler Community Arts School’s summer intensive program,” Attaway said. “She’s doing wonderfully well, and she’s incredibly mature.”

Attaway said this year’s Nutcracker is particularly strong because the students have been working together as an ensemble since the beginning of the school year. All 114 dance majors performed Pratt’s Riverrun Revisited at Indianapolis’ Brookside Park in September. This site-specific work was the department’s latest installment of the Streamlines project, part of a National Science Foundation grant that paired artists and scientists to explore scientific concepts and concerns about human intervention of the waterways in Indianapolis.

That experience created an incredible bond among the dancers, Attaway said. They became a cohesive company in a short time.

“We’re really ready for The Nutcracker,” he said. “It’s going to be great.”

Dancers from the Central Indiana community are:

Mya Adams, Fortville, age 11; Ballerina Academy of Dance

Maya Adkins, Greenwood, age 13; Tippy Toes

Chloe Andry, Noblesville, age 12; Ballerinas Academy of dance

Kate Barker, Noblesville, age 12; Ballerina Academy of Dance

Julia Brookshire, Indianapolis; age 15 ; Tippy Toes

Avalynn Bullerdick, Indianapolis, age 10; Curtain Call

Abby Burnette, Noblesville; age 11; Ballerina Academy of Dance

Hazel Derloshon, Greenwood, age 9; The Dance Company of Indianapolis

Maggie Derloshon, Greenwood, age 12; The Dance Company of Indianapolis

Maggie Derloshon, Greenwood, age 12; The Dance Company of Indianapolis

Abigail   Dirrim, Avon, age 10; Dance Legacy

Delaney Engelking, Indianapolis; age 10; Tippy Toes

Sophia Estka, McCordsville, age 11; Indianapolis School of Ballet

Joshua Fairchild, Avon, age 12; Premier Academy of Dance

Elaina Fletcher, Brownsburg, age 10; Dance Legacy

Gabrielle Hadad, Indianapolis, age 9; Indianapolis Ballet conservatory

Clifford Huehls, Indianapolis, age 6; Indiana Ballet Conservatory

Wednesday Jarvis, Greenwood, age 8; Starlight Dance Academy

Shaylee Navarrette, Plainfield, age 13; Infinity Dance Academy

Shelby Parker, Plainfield, age 10; Premier Academy of the Performing Arts

Quinn Potter, Indianapolis, age 8; Indianapolis School of Ballet

Daniel Pratt, Indianapolis, age 7; Indianapolis School of Ballet

Athena Reel, Indianapolis, age 9; Dance Legacy

Adriana Reel, Indianapolis, age 8; Dance Legacy

Mallory Sisk, Indianapolis, age 9; Dance Legacy

Ava Stiefel, Fishers, age 9; Ballerinas Academy of dance

Karla Suazo, Indianapolis, age 14; Dance Legacy

Erin Wagner, Indianapolis, age 9; Dance Refinery

Maura Wheeler, Indianapolis, age 8; Fox Hill

Mariah Wilson, Speedway, age 9; Dance Legacy

Meeka Wojciechowski, Brownsburg, age 6; Sister Act Dance Academy

Butler Ballet would like to thank the following schools for allowing these talented students to participate in this production:

Avon Intermediate/Avon Middle School/Brown Elementary/Brownsburg Whitelick Elementary/Calvary Lutheran/Cardinal Ritter HS/Clark Pleasant Middle School/Center for Inquiry #2/Center for Inquiry #27/Crooked Creek/Fortville Elementary/George Washington Carver/Grassy Creek Elementary/Guion Creek Elementary/Hamilton Southeastern Jr. High/Homeschool/Immaculate Heart of Mary/Indiana Connections Academy/Lantern Road Elementary/Noblesville East Middle/Noblesville West Middle School/Orchard School/Plainfield Central Elementary/Plainfield Middle School/Southport High School/Speedway.



(Italics indicate understudies)


Scene 1: The Christmas Party

Choreography: Derek Reid

Herr Drosselmeyer            James Cramer

Toymakers                         Emma Fernandez, Nina Nicotera, Amber Wickey

Tiny Elf                               Maura Wheeler

Harlequin                           Kahari Moore (Ken Shiozawa)

Columbine                         Emily Elwell* or Arianna Benis**

Mechanical Soldier            Niklas Nelson (Francis Mihm)

Puppets                              Sophia Estka, Shelby Parker, Meeka Wojciechowski

Frau Von Stahlbaum         Camber Sasser

Counselor Von Stahlbaum Benjamin Shepard

Clara, their daughter         Chloe Andry

Fritz, their son                    Joshua Fairchild

Grandmother                     Kitty Dargie (Amanda Rodriguez)

Guests at the party             Erica Bernstein, Kaila Grant Carter, Sarah Morris, Hollie Rudolph, Courtney Ramirez, Nick Bentz, Ken Shiozawa, Graeham Toomey, Nate Tyson, Daniel Urbina

Friends of Clara and Fritz Maya Adkins, Kate Barker, Julia Brookshire, Abby Burnette, Maggie Derloshon, Shaylee Navarrette, Karla Suazo, Clifford Huehls, Daniel Pratt

Maids                                Carolan Norris, Audrey Lukacz

Scene 2: The Battle

Choreography:  Susan McGuire

Tiny Mice                           Hazel Derloshon, Wednesday Jarvis, Adriana Reel

Toymakers                         Emma Fernandez, Nina Nicotera, Amber Wickey

Mechanical Soldier            Niklas Nelson (Francis Mihm)

Harlequin                           Kahari Moore (Ken Shiozawa)

Columbine                         Emily Elwell* or Arianna Benis**

Mice                                    Kathryn Aaberg, Adriana Castellanet, Jamila Johnson, Ariana Morrison, Ciara Cicalese, Naomi Robinson, Fiona Schicho, Michaela Semenza (Briana Winkler)

Nutcracker                         Brian Bennett* or Liam Fitzpatrick**

Mouse Queen                     Rosa Prigan (Eliza Woitinnek)

Mouse Guards                   Nick Bentz, Graeham Toomey

Soldiers                               Julia Bluhm, Eva Highberg, Olivia Holabird, Elizabeth Labovitz, Amanda Piroue, Elizabeth Powers, Emma Schilling, Laura Theisen, (Mary Lynn Moore)

Scene 3: Into the Kingdom of Snow

Choreography:  Cynthia Pratt

Prince Nutcracker              Brian Bennett* or Liam Fitzpatrick**, (Joel Morin-Kensicki)

Clara                                  Chloe Andry

Snow Queen                      Elizabeth Abbick* or Jessie Philbrick** (Chelsea Kuhn)

Snow King                         Joel Morin-Kensicki* or Thomas Curran** (Benjamin Shepard)

Snow Princesses                 Emilia Floody, Sierra Ortega

Snow Flakes                       Holloway Bird, Tatum Farlow, Madeline Gambino, Allison Haan, Fiona Huber, Stefanee Montesantos, Helena Oliver, LiLi Pigott, Lili Poulsen, Erin Quigley, Ashley Thopiah, Leah Wolfe (Lexi Cook, Genevieve Ferris, Sophie Robertson)



Entrance into the Kingdom of Sweets

Angel Choreography:  Susan McGuire

Kingdom Choreography:  Michelle Jarvis

Lead Angels                       Annelise Bryan, Brooke Mello (Allison Haan)

Angels                                Claire Christensen, Holly Christensen, Fiona Connelly, Jamila Johnson, Elizabeth Labovitz, Sarah Lewis Audrey Lukacz, Mary Moore,, Carolan Norris, Briana Winkler, (Eva Highberg, Emma Schilling)

Sugar Plum Fairy               Julianne Blunt* or Jessy Dick** (Hope Hagen)

Kingdom Dwellers             Dancers from Act II Divertissements

Spanish Dance

Choreography: Marek Cholewa

Soloist                                 Amber Lerman with Royal Hartwig (Alex Lister, Cole Rodgers)

Corps                                 Kathryn Aaberg, Adriana Castellanet, Kaila Grant Carter, Nina Nicotera Naomi Robinson, Fiona Schicho, Michela Semenza, Laura Theisen

Arabian Dance

Choreography:  Susan McGuire

Soloists                               Daryl Barnes* or Jessica Williams** with Thomas Curran* or Ben Shepard**

Corps                                  Gaby denBlanken, Madeline Lucchetti, Sophia Robertson, Tasha Sprovieri,

Chinese Dance

Choreography: Derek Reid

Soloists                               Eliza Woitinnek and Francis Mihm (Emily Elwell)

Demi Soloists                      Sasha Biagiarelli, Genevieve Ferris, Alex Tarnowski, Ashley Tomaszewski

Russian Dance

Choreography: Derek Reid

Soloists                               Kahari Moore, Kitty Dargie, Rebecca Lucas, Amanda Rodriguez, Delany Waldron (Ken Shiozawa)

Dance of the Mirlitons

Choreography: Cynthia Pratt

Soloist                                 Hope Hagen

Demi Soloists                      Holloway Bird, Lexi Cook, Fiona Huber, LiLi Pigott (Stefanee Montesantos, Nina Nicotera)

Mother Ginger and the Polichinelles

Choreography: Rosanna Ruffo

Assistants to Ms. Ruffo: Amanda Rodriguez, Marie Ritschard

Mother Ginger                   Rob Estka

Legs                                    Brian Bennett** or Liam Fitzpatrick*

Polichinelles                       Mya Adams, Avalynn Bullerdick, Maggie Derloshon, Abigail Dirrim, Delaney Engelking, Elaina Fletcher, Gabrielle Hadad, Quinn Potter, Athena Reel, Mallory Sisk, Ava Stiefel, Erin Wagner

Tumbler                             Mariah Wilson

Waltz of the Flowers

Choreography: Marek Cholewa

Dew Drop Fairy                 Chelsea Kuhn* or Kristen Sink**

Cavalier                             Matthew Griffin* or Jonathyn Carey** (Brian Bennett)

Flowers Soloists                  Elizabeth Abbick** or Marie Ritschard*, Isabel Amador, Cole Rodgers, Jorge Urbina (Tatum Farlow, Royal Hartwig)

Flowers                               Claire Bednarek, Livia Bedwell, Julia Guiheen, Kyra Laubacher,, Alex Lister, Eliana Montalvo, Nina Nicotera*, Marie Ritschard**, Grace Robison, Molly Rumble, Karnjanakorn Sapianchai (Tatum Farlow, Nina Nicotera, Erin Quigley, Ashley Thopiah,)

Grand Pas de Deux

Choreography:  Rosanna Ruffo

Sugar Plum Fairy               Julianne Blunt* or Jessy Dick** (Hope Hagen)

Prince                                 Brian Bennett* or Liam Fitzpatrick** (Joel Morin-Kensicki)

Waltz Finale and Apotheosis

Choreography:  Michelle Jarvis & Act 2 Choreographers

Full cast

* December 1, 7:30 pm; December 3, 8:00 pm; December 4, 12 noon

**December 2, 8:00 pm; December 3, 2:00 pm; December 4, 5:00 pm


Media contact:
Marc Allan



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