The Portland Ballet's performers include young dancers from Beaverton and Raleigh Hills.
The Portland Ballet is getting ready to open up The Enchanted Toyshop on Thanksgiving Weekend, and inside it, youll find some big-time talent from the Westside.
The Enchanted Toyshop (formerly known by its French title, La Boutique Fantasque) is TPBs signature showpiece, an enduring favorite for both family audiences and Academy dancers.
The show, along with the premier of a new piece by Anne Mueller called Gift Box, opens Friday and continues through Sunday at Lincoln Hall on the Portland State University campus at 1620 S.W. Park Ave.
As to those Westside connections, they include Kerridwyn Schanck of Raleigh Hills (shes a Catlin Gabel High School graduate who will dance in the lead roles as The Blue Fairy and the Toy Soldier Commander in The Enchanted Toyshop, and serve as a principal dancer in Gift Box), and Andrew Davis of Beaverton (as well as his parents, who both teach at TPB, who will dance the lead role of Pinocchio in The Enchanted Toyshop).
Schanck, 18, has been studying with The Portland Ballet for 12 years. She has grown up performing in The Enchanted Toyshop, rising through the ranks and taking on ever-more challenging roles.
She graduated last spring from Catlin Gabel School and is taking a year deferment from Mount Holyoke College to study in The Portland Ballets Career Track program with Anne Mueller. She oversees the schoolwork of her fellow dancers in the program, which prepares students for a professional dance career.
Davis, meanwhile, is 12, is joined by his two sisters as students in TPBs Academy, and dances as part of TPBs male dance crew, affectionately known as The Wolfpack.
In The Enchanted Toyshop, the magic begins when two children are accidentally locked all night in a toyshop, and Pinocchio reigns over a parade of playful toys that come to life to entertain the guests. Playing cards, poodles, Pierrots and Russian nesting dolls are all part of the fast-paced fun.
Gift Box, written by Mueller, co-artistic director of TPB, embraces stately sweeping gestures and poignant, touching details.
For more information, go to theportlandballet.org or call 503-750-3157.
By Miles Vance