What makes the holidays special? If you ask a dancer, most will tell you a big part of holiday magic is performing in The Nutcracker ballet, and for 20 years, the Wilton Dance Studio has been proud to share this ballet tradition with dancers and audience alike. This year, those visions of sparkling sugarplums come to life once more on Sunday, Dec. 17.

This full-scale production features more than 80 students and adults from seven area towns, with 53 dancers from Wilton. The ballet will be performed on Sunday, Dec. 17 at 1 p.m. and 4:30 p.m. at the Wilton High School’s Clune Center for the Performing Arts.

Wilton High School junior Dilshad Dinshaw is delighted to dance the part of the Sugar Plum Fairy this year.

“The atmosphere is really good. I look forward to it every year. I love the dancing, the music. A special part of The Nutcracker for me has been maturing and learning new roles. As a younger dancer, you watch the older girls and then you get to play those parts!” she said.

“We are delighted to bring this show to life every year, and it’s extra special this year to celebrate our 20th anniversary of the performance. Our dancers, who range in age from adorable 3-years-olds to elegant adults in the party scene, each carry a special bit of holiday magic with them because they’re part of The Nutcracker ballet tradition,” says Brenda Froehlich, creative director and owner of the Wilton Dance Studio.

Every year, Froehlich brings new elements to the show, from costumes to choreography. This 20th anniversary year, a key element is sparkle. “This year we’ve hand applied thousands of Swarovski rhinestones to dresses and necklaces, to make them stand out even more in the stage lights,” she says.

She has also increased the level of challenge for dancers by adding new choreography for older dancer to the infamous battle scene between the Nutcracker and the Rat King. “We even imported giant mice masks from the UK!,” Froehlich reveals.

Wilton Dance Studio’s The Nutcracker shares the magic of dance in a way that appeals to audiences of all ages. The performance length is manageable for young children, and they are encouraged to attend. The ballet follows the traditional story of Clara and her Nutcracker prince from E.T.A. Hoffman’s The Nutcracker and the Mouse King, with music by Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky. Professional sets and elegant costumes complete the high-quality production.

To purchase tickets, call 203.544.9007 and leave a message or order on the Wilton Dance Studio website by downloading and printing the ticket order form. Tickets are also available at the door on the day of the show.

Photo Credit: Donner Photographic

Wilton dancers pictured above:

Front Row:  Jillian Tobey, Sophie Froehlich, Ryann Tobey, Sidney Skott, Chloe Sissener, Freyer Sissener, Ellie Wang, Emily Connell; Second Row:  Stacia Dooley, Kirstie Finnecy, Katherine Love, Ellery Helgsen, Kristina Torkelsen (Ballerina Doll), Alexa Marr, Giovanna Rotini-Cole, Emma Unger, Amira Srivastava; Third Row:  Caroline Assef, Grace Johnson, Samantha Markey, Fiona Conway (Fritz), Brian Froehlich (Snow King & Sugar Plum Cavalier), Dilshad Dinshaw (Sugar Plum Fairy), Ava Curto, Victoria DiRocco, Rowan McGrath, Elizabeth Vermeulen; Fourth Row:  Jamilah Santos, Noa Gottlieb, Kayla DiRocco