Audience members will enjoy two shows in one at Kansas Ballet Company’s fourth annual Summer Showcase at Topeka Performing Arts Center on July 30th at 6:00pm. The company will feature professional ballet dancers Oksana Maslova and Anton Kandaurov, originally from Ukraine, and Kaleena Burks and Ryan Jolicouer-Nye from the Kansas City Ballet. Krishnapriya Pramod, director of the Chilanka School of Dance in Overland Park, will round out the exciting offerings with her Indian Classical Dance (Bharatanatyam) performance. In addition to the professional showcase, dance enthusiasts will enjoy a special presentation just for children: The Adventures of CIpollino (Little Onion) performed by Kansas Ballet Academy dancers. Vegetables vs. Fruits! This charming one-act ballet is sure to enchant the littlest fans. “Although famous in Russia, Cipollino is rarely seen in the US and it is truly a gem” says Artistic Director Stephanie Heston, “The plotline is about a heroic Little Onion who fights against the unjust Princess Lemon and it is absolutely adorable. We are so excited to share this ballet with Topeka… and with our own 4 year old daughter!”
The Showcase is a culmination of three weeks of intensive study by students at Kansas Ballet Academy. Local dancers are currently training several hours per day, five days per week to cultivate their ballet technique and rehearse for the upcoming event. In addition to performing, the visiting guest artists will also work with Academy dancers in the studio. Our professional guests will lead Topeka students through classes in ballet technique, classical Indian dance and will also judge an in-house student choreography competition.
Proceeds from the Showcase and the Garden Party will help the non-profit ballet company continue to provide high quality dance experiences in Topeka. “Our Access the Arts program provides several free performances throughout the community and also helps us bring free training to children who would otherwise not have the opportunity to learn ballet”, says Artistic Director Alexander Smirnov. Kansas Ballet currently partners with the Boys and Girls Club for summer camp and will work with USD 501 in the fall to bring free ballet classes to State Street Elementary School during late start Fridays. “The Showcase is really a fundraiser to help us make these important community programs possible. We take great pride in bringing world-class dancers to Topeka—to help inspire our young people to dream big and pursue excellence in their own lives.”
General Admission tickets are on sale now for $10.00 through Tututix.com (visit kansasballet.com for a direct link), by calling 855-222-2849 or at the door on performance day. A pre-show VIP “Garden Party” experience is available for $30.00/adult and must be reserved in advance. As VIP guests, children can take part in a “mini ballet class” and story time while adults enjoy wine from Crooked Post Winery and sumptuous hors d’oeuvre by Aboud’s Catering. The Garden Party will include live music from The Studio String Quartet and meet and greet opportunities with the professional guest artists.