October 2021 Carmel’s own internationally renowned Indiana Ballet Conservatory (IBC) is presenting its beloved annual tradition, “The Nutcracker,” and is again performing on the stage of the Palladium at the Center for the Performing Arts. The majestic hall creates a breathtaking and “palatial” ambiance that sets the perfect scenery for both the audience and performers. After last year’s disappointing hiatus from the traditional program—due to COVID-19 cancellations and restrictions—IBC’s presentation of “The Nutcracker” is poised to be even more exhilarating and magical than ever! A Brief Overview of IBC IBC was founded in 2010 by Artistic Director Alyona Yakovleva-Randall. IBC’s mission as a preprofessional ballet school is to be committed to providing the best classical ballet training to its students and launching the next generation of dancers onto the world stage. IBC students continually place in top positions in national and international competitions and pursue professional careers in dance throughout the globe. Built upon a 300‐year foundation of excellence, IBC’s mission is to fuse the finest classical ballet instruction with the very best of contemporary and modern training in a professional and nurturing environment, providing all students the opportunity to thrive and achieve their goals. IBC strives to share the art of dance through performances as well as outreach programs for the underserved and to instill in its students the desire to give back in a way that will change lives and connect a community. Featuring International and Local Talent IBC is honored to be collaborating with local talent as well as guest artist Sebastian Vinet. Born in Santiago de Chile, Vinet began ballet training at Escuela de Ballet del Teatro Muncipal de Santiago. After two years under full scholarship, he moved to Houston, Texas, to finish his training at Ben Stevenson Houston Ballet Academy. In 2009, he joined the Houston Ballet and in 2010, the San Francisco Ballet. He has been invited to dance at international ballet galas in several nations and was awarded an apprenticeship recipient at the 2009 Prix de Lausanne. Vinet also was a recipient of the Premio Jovenes Líderes del diario El Mercurio (2009)—an award to Chilean artists, presented by the ambassador of Chile in the United States. In 2017, Vinet was the artistic director and creator of the first international ballet gala to be presented at the emblematic theater in Chile Teatro Oriente. Most recently, Vinet was honored to be a 2020 Prix de Lausanne competition jurist in Switzerland, being the youngest person in the history of the prestigious competition to be invited to join the panel of judges. IBC is collaborating again with the Indianapolis Children’s Choir (ICC) and its artistic director Joshua Pedde. For those that missed the 2019 production of IBC’s “The Nutcracker” that featured children from ICC—you are in for an unforgettable experience! Performing the role of the coveted “Sugar Plum Fairy” will be two IBC dancers, Abigail Kimball (16) from Fishers, Indiana, and Aurora Ausserer (16) from Carmel, Indiana, who hold this distinguished honor this year. Yakovleva-Randall shared that Ausserer’s family is originally from Seattle, Washington, and her entire family uprooted and moved to Carmel so that Ausserer can train with IBC. Performing at the Palladium in Carmel, Indiana Staged by Yakovleva-Randall and based on the 1934 choreography of Vasily Vainonen, IBC is proud to present “The Nutcracker” in front of a live and, hopefully, FULL audience. Yakovleva-Randall shared what it means to her, along with the IBC staff and students, to perform on such a remarkable stage and luxurious concert hall. “I personally love the Palladium, and my staff and students are all excited to perform at the Palladium,” Yakovleva-Randall expressed. “This is why we are thinking outside of the box as much as possible to work with this stage. We have to adjust the choreography because it is not a ‘ballet’ stage, but we enjoy the experience, and we like working with the staff a lot.” Where IBC cannot create traditional special effects such as snow, it is working with the Center’s stage crew and its lighting technology to emulate falling snow. “We have to be creative because we cannot have the traditional sets that we used in the Toby Theater” Yakovleva-Randall said. “We are working with Ian Marshall who is building our periaktoi .” Children and adults of all ages will be transformed by this heartwarming tale of a young girl and her beloved Nutcracker as she battles evil and learns the value and resiliency of the human spirit. This version is closest to that of the original “Nutcracker” ballet that debuted over 100 years ago in Russia, so you won’t want to miss this timeless and beloved holiday favorite! Tickets are on sale at thecenterpresents.org. For more information on Indiana Ballet Conservatory, visit indianaballetconservatory.org.