“Dancing is a gift,” believes Jean Cobelli, Director of Dance at Enchanted Garden Studios and creator, director, and choreographer of the “Nuts about the Nutcracker” ballet, which finished its 14th annual performance on December 17th at Ridgefield High School. For 14 straight years, Cobelli has shared the gift of dance in numerous ways, most notably by donating 100% of the show’s profits to worthy charities. This year, for the first time, SPHERE was the lucky recipient of the show’s proceeds, receiving a donation of $25,000.
“Nuts about the Nutcracker” was written by Cobelli after years performing and teaching the original “Nutcracker” ballet. The original is a rendition of the classic story, “The Nutcracker and the Mouse King,” written in 1816, by E. T. A. Hoffmann, in which young Marie Stahlbaum's favorite Christmas toy, the Nutcracker, comes alive and, after defeating the evil Mouse King in battle, takes her away to a magical kingdom populated by dolls. Hoffmann's story was adapted by Vsevolozhsky and Petipa for the ballet and Tchaikovsky wrote the music. The “Nutcracker” was first performed in St. Petersburg, Russia, on December 18, 1892.