Brenda’s School of Baton and Dance has been a place of Christmas cheer and hard work, as young dancers prepare for an upcoming performance.
All 42 dancers hail from Saskatoon and surrounding areas. Their home-grown talent will be showcased while performing the Nutcracker with the Royal Winnipeg Ballet.
The dancers are lead by Mackenzie Lehner, the Saskatchewan rehearsal director for the RWB, who also is from Saskatchewan.
“From working all over the world, I really, truly believe that Saskatchewan is a place to be,” she said.
She said being able to teach the performance is a full-circle moment for her.
“The kids get to experience all of the different things that come with a show like this like set changes, everything along those lines so it’s just a magical, really great learning experience for them,” she said.
For young dancers like the sisters Robinson, it’s a chance to share time on the big stage. 11 year old Blake and her younger sister Cooper will be dancing together on tour.
“We’re together in the battle scene and I actually get to chase her around a little bit so it’s really fun, and it’s really good because I get to be backstage with her and hang out with her and I just love her so much,” said Blake.
Blake has been in a nutcracker production before, but this is the first time that she will have her sister by her side.
“Since Blake did it the first time, I wanted to do it really badly, so this is a really exciting moment for me,” Cooper said.
“It’s just going to be so exciting and all this time I’ve spent preparing, I’ve been looking forward to that, so it’ll be really exciting that it’s now happening,” Blake added.
Opening night of the Nutcracker in Saskatoon is Dec. 15.