LEWISTON – Children and parents are invited to a free “Nutcracker” ballet show and tell from 4 to 4:30 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 7, in Callahan Hall, Lewiston Public Library. Several student dancers from the cast of the Portland Ballet’s production of “The Victorian Nutcracker” will perform a program of brief excerpts from the show, then spend some time visiting with the audience.

Participating in the program will be Jaid Cherkis of Lewiston and Vincent Ratsavong of Turner, who will dance the Russian trepak duet; Ashton Plummer of Lewiston, appearing as the Nutcracker Prince; Michael Girouard of Auburn, Soldier Mouse; Leah Fournier of Lewiston, Ribbon Candy; and sisters Melina and Kaylee Plummer of Lewiston, Polichinelles.

As mementos of the event, attendees can purchase “retired” Portland Ballet toe shoes, which have been autographed by the dancers. The income from the sales will benefit the educational programs of the Portland School of Ballet.

A photographer from Bell Photographic will also be on hand to take souvenir photos of youngsters who would like to pose with their favorite costumed characters. A portion of the proceeds from the photo sales is earmarked to support future dance activities for youth at the library’s new cultural learning center.

“We thought this event would be a wonderful way to introduce young children to the world of ballet,” said Cindy Larock, cultural coordinator at the library, “while also letting them experience a bit of the special ‘Nutcracker’ magic up close.”

Following the library event, the dancers will appear in a colorful procession planned to kick off Lewiston’s festive Downtown Holiday Celebration, beginning at the Public Theatre lot at 5:30 p.m. and moving up Lisbon Street to the Courthouse Plaza.

Portland Ballet’s “The Victorian Nutcracker” will be presented at Bates College’s Schaeffer Theatre at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 16 (a matinée performance there the following day is sold out), and will be repeated at Merrill Auditorium in Portland at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Dec. 22, and at 2 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 23. Tickets for the Lewiston show may be purchased at Bull Moose Music, while tickets for the Portland shows are available via PortTix at 842-0800.

More information on Thursday’s event at the library is available by calling 784-0135, ext. 200.

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