Local News

Check Out The Nutcracker Ballet In High-Definition TV

Posted December 24, 2001

— Remember the first time you saw "The Nutcracker" ballet? Now, you can watch it like you have never seen it before -- in high definition.

For the past 35 years, the North Carolina School of the Arts has presented "The Nutcracker," a holiday tradition for both North Carolina families and the dancers.

"We don't get to see a lot of the big classical ballets anymore, and I think it's important for the students to have those experiences," said Susan McCullough, dean of dancing at the North Carolina School of the Arts. "It's part of their tradition and it's part of their history. For them to have that opportunity is very important.

"It's also a great opportunity to bring families in and start people to be interested in dance and ballet," she said.

WRAL-TV and UNC-TV have teamed up to broadcast the School of the Arts' production of "The Nutcracker" at the Stevens Center in Winston-Salem. The ballet was shot in high definition, so the pictures and sound will be crystal clear for the TV audience, just as if you are sitting in front of the stage.

There are 80 School of the Arts' dancers in the production.

"We have many dancers from North Carolina, dancers from every state in the US, dancers from Israel and Hungary, so we have a good representation of a kind of international dance scene at our school," McCullough said.

The ballet is set in Russia during the 19th century. Louisville native Jessica Whitson has performed as "Clara" for the last three years and shared her favorite Nutcracker scenes.

"I love the dolls, that's my favorite scene, probably, along with the snow scene with the Snow King and Queen," she said.

You and your family can watch "The Nutcracker" at 4 p.m. Tuesday on WRAL-TV 5 and on WRAL-DT 53.1.


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