Two Sets of Twins Dance in Cape Town City Ballet's THE TIN SOLDIER, Dec 11-24

Two Sets of Twins Dance in Cape Town City Ballet's THE TIN SOLDIER, Dec 11-24

Two sets of twins, Lauren and Lara du Plessis (11) and Joshua and Liam Delport (15) are among the 23 children that will be dancing in Cape Town City Ballet's upcoming Christmas production The Tin Soldier at Artscape Opera House from 11 - 24 December.

Auditions were held early in October and in total 79 children auditioned for dancing in Robin van Wyk's new ballet. In the end 23 young dancers between the ages of 9 and 15 were chosen to dance the parts of Pillows, Lambs and Little Boys in the fantasy-filled ballet. Since then rehearsals have been in full swing every Wednesday afternoon, with the choreographer putting the young dancers through their paces.

Robin admits that he enjoys working with children and giving them the opportunity to work in a professional production. " I did as a little boy, and was bitten by the performance bug after being a page boy in Romeo and Juliet. I knew I wanted to be a dancer and that was it!" He also believes that this is a way to attract and build younger audiences. "I've never had any difficulties in working with young dancers. I seem to know how to bring out the best in them," van Wyk adds.

Joshua and Liam Delport (15) are "old hands" when it comes to performing. They have appeared in several professional productions, e.g. Peter Pan and the lost Boys, The Nutcracker and Coppélia, all with Cape Town City Ballet. The twins started dancing when they were 8 years old. In primary school they were often teased about this, but found that the best way to cope with it was just to ignore it completely. They live in Silvertown (Athlone) and attend Zonnebloem Nest Senior School in Woodstock, where they are currently in Grade 9. They love performing and according to their mom, Delshe, "pounce on every opportunity to gain even more experience". When they get nervous before a performance they do their routine warm-up exercises to help them cope. Apart from ballet they also do Spanish dancing. Asked who their role model is, they are very quick to name the late conservationist Steve Irwin - although their "dad is also very high on the list"!

For Lauren and Lara du Plessis (11) from Grassy Park, performing in a professional production is a maiden voyage. They both started ballet classes two years ago and feel very excited about dancing in a fairytale. The girls attend John Graham Primary School where they are in Grade 5 and enjoy taking part in netball, choral singing and drama. The two ballerinas are unanimous in their vote for Nelson Mandela as their hero. Lauren has ambitions to become a TV presenter when she grows up, while Lara is considering a career as actress.

The Tin Soldier, the fairytale of a toy tin soldier's love for a beautiful paper ballerina is set to have its world premiere in Cape Town on 11 December 2013 and runs till 24 December. Bookings at Computicket or Artscape-dial-a-seat on 021 421 7695. Tickets 125-225. Special discount packages are available for groups of 10 OR 2 or 3 show combo ticket.

On the eve of the world premiere of this brand new Cape Town City Ballet production, the public is invited to join the creative team to take a peek behind the scenes of the show on Friday 6 December at 18h00 during INSIGHT into The Tin Soldier at the Artscape Opera House.

Cape Town City Ballet Festive Season:

Insight intoThe Tin Soldier : 6 December, 18h00, Artscape Opera House, R 50

The Tin Soldier : 11 - 24 December 2013, Artscape Opera House, R 125 - R 225

Belles and Beaux : 18-22 December 2013, Artscape Opera House,R 125 - R 220

Night & Day : 31 December 2013 - 11 January 2014, Artscape Theatre, R 250 on 31 Dec/other performances R150-175

The Tin Soldier : 11 - 24 Dec 2013 at Artscape Opera House

Wed 11 Dec @ 19h30 with CPO*

Fri 13 Dec @ 11h00 with soundtrack

Fri 13 Dec @ 19h30 with CPO

Sat 14 Dec @ 14h00 with CPO

Sat 14 Dec @ 19h30 with CPO

Sun 15 Dec @ 15h00 with CPO

Mon 23 Dec @ 19h30 with CPO

Tues 24 Dec @ 14h00 with soundtrack

*CPO = Cape Philharmonic Orchestra

Principal casting for The Tin Soldier:

11th Dec 19h30 Laura Bosenberg, Thomas Thorne

13th Dec 11h00 Elizabeth Nienaber , Ivan Boonzaaier

13th Dec 19h30 Angela Hansford, Daniel Szybkowski

14th Dec 14h00 Kirstel Jensen, Jesse Milligan

14th Dec 19h30 Laura Bosenberg, Thomas Thorne

15th Dec 15h00 Elizabeth Nienaber , Ivan Boonzaaier

23rd Dec 19h30 Angela Hansford, Daniel Szybkowski

24th Dec 14h00 Kirstel Jensen, Jesse Milligan

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