Local Dancers To Spread Cheer Through Holiday Performances

Backers of Ballet, a Phoenix-based, non-profit dance group under the artistic direction of Rena Backer, has announced three performances aimed at spreading holiday cheer this season.

The first will benefit children facing serious illnesses and their families at Phoenix Children’s Hospital on Sunday, November 16 at 2 p.m. The 30-minute show will feature excerpts from the holiday classic, The Nutcracker, with various roles from the second act performed.

The second performance, which is open to the public, will be Sunday, December 7, at Desert Ridge Marketplace. The show begins at 2:30 p.m. and will run approximately 45 minutes. Excerpts from Act I of the Nutcracker will be performed.

The full-length version of The Nutcracker will have two performances; one on Saturday, December 13, at 7 p.m. and a second on December 14, at 2 p.m. both at Shadow Mountain High School. Annually, Backers of Ballet produce timeless ballet for charity, benefiting the Marine Corps’ Toys for Tots campaign. Admission is a “new” unwrapped toy and $5 to cover production costs.

Mrs. Backer is a member of one of the most acclaimed families in ballet history, her great-grandmother being Alexandra Fedorova Fokine. Fokine’s Nutcracker tracks a direct line to the original 1892 production in St. Petersburg. Most dancers in Backers of Ballet are Valley youth who are students at the Rena Backer School of Ballet in Phoenix.

For more information regarding the Desert Ridge performance or the full-length production at Shadow Mountain High School, contact Rena Backer at 602-485-5000.

About backers of ballet

Backers of Ballet is a non-profit, 501(c)3 corporation whose primary focus is to raise funds to fulfill the dreams and wishes of those who want to be exposed to the joy of dance. The group puts on an annual production of the Nutcracker to benefit the Marine Corps’ Toys for Tots Campaign and does other public and community outreach events. Visit www.backerballet.com for more information.

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