Little ones perform ‘Ugly Duckling’ at Hilton College Theatre

2017-06-14 06:02
Robin van Wyk works with young dancers on the Cupids sequence for The Ugly Duckling.PHOTO: Estelle Sinkins

Robin van Wyk works with young dancers on the Cupids sequence for The Ugly Duckling.PHOTO: Estelle Sinkins

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YOUNG ballet dancers in Pietermaritzburg and the Midlands are hard at work rehearsing for the KZN Midlands Youth Ballet production, The Ugly Duckling, which will be staged at the Hilton College Theatre from July 13 to 15.

Hans Christian Anderson’s tale of a duckling who is ostracised and ridiculed for being different, only to become a stunning swan, will feature four members of the Cape Town City Ballet — former Maritzburg dancers Steven Underwood and Sascha Nott, Hannah Ward from Durban, and Ivan Boonzaier — in the principal roles.

Robin van Wyk, artistic director of the Cape Town City Ballet, who grew up and learnt his ballet in the city, has expanded the familiar fairytale to give all 75 dancers involved a chance to shine. This means the usual ducks and ducklings will be joined by flocks of geese, chickens and swans, cupids, huntresses, gypsies and skaters for the shows.

“There isn’t a lot to the story, so I had to get a bit creative,” Van Wyk, the productions choreographer and director, said.

“So, for example, we will have Mary Mary Quite Contrary appearing with her cockle shells, which will have cupids inside.”

The Ugly Duckling promises to be a colourful spectacle with the senior dancers wearing costumes from the Cape Town City Ballet wardrobe, and new outfits being specially made for the little ones.

Van Wyk, who travelled up from the Cape to teach the dancers the steps in May, will be returning to Pietermaritzburg this month to “tweak” things.

Performances of The Ugly Duckling, which is being staged in association with the Cape Town City Ballet, will take place at the Hilton College Theatre at 3 pm and 7 pm on Thursday, July 13 and Friday, July 14 and at 3 pm and 6.30 pm on Saturday, July 15.

Tickets are R100 (R80 for pensioners and children), Call 033 383 0126 for more details.

— Supplied.

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