Everything you need to know for Performance Week
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The Nutcracker Survival Guide

Everything you need to know for the next week

After months of rehearsals, preparation, countless emails and schedules, the time has finally come: the Children's Nutcracker 2016 is ready to hit the stage. 

This email covers all the 'need to know' facts that will see you through the next week.  Follow these and it all will seem effortless.
This show is run almost entirely by volunteers; parents just like you who want their kids to do their best on stage.  Please follow all instructions given by our volunteers; they are there because they care.

Final Week Schedule

  • Saturday December 10: No regular class. Rehearsal in Wells for all routines made up multiple classes (ALL Soldiers, Mice, Russians, Mother Ginger Sugar Candies, Marzipan, Angels and Snowflakes PM Show).  Click here for the schedule.
  • Sunday December 11 8am-12 noon: Regular weekend Act I rehearsal (click for schedule)
    12 noon -1pm: Peppermint Candies (30 min AM Show, 30 min PM Show)
    1pm - 2pm: Wells Christmas Parade Rehearsal with Hot Chocolate and Marshmallows!
    2pm: Wells Christmas Parade (All are Welcome. See details here).
  • Monday December 12: STUDIO CLOSED - NO REGULAR CLASS
  • Tuesday December 13: STUDIO CLOSED - NO REGULAR CLASS
  • Wednesday December 14: STUDIO CLOSED - NO REGULAR CLASS
  • Thursday December 15: 4-8pm: Act I Dress Rehearsal
  • Friday December 16 4-8pm: Act II Dress Rehearsal
  • Saturday December 17: Shows at 11am & 3pm.

Dress Rehearsal
Getting used to being on stage

EVERYONE performing in the show will be in a Dress Rehearsal either on Thursday or Friday.  Make sure you know when your dancer's rehearsal time is, and ensure they are ready in costume, with makeup and hair done by the time specified on the Dress Rehearsal schedule.
Attendance at the Dress Rehearsal is mandatory.
This is the one an only time the Dancers get to rehearse their placing on stage, stage entrances and exits, and dancing in full costume before the show. It is also the only time before the show that parents can get comfortable doing hair and makeup, familiarize themselves with the Dressing Room, and so on. It can greatly affect your Dancer's confidence on stage on Show Day if they haven't had the opportunity to rehearse in the same setting.  If will also affect the integrity of an entire routine if Dancer/s are missing from the rehearsal.
  • Click to view the Final Dress Rehearsal schedule
  • Dress Rehearsal IS NOT a drop off and leave event, especially for younger dancers.  Parents are expected to stay with their dancers, helping them with costume, hair and makeup, and staying with them until they are ready to rehearse.  Once they are done rehearsing you can help them get out of costume, return their costume to a volunteer, at which time you can leave if your dancer has no other rehearsals that day;
  • This is a FULL DRESS REHEARSAL, which means hair, makeup, costume, tights and dance shoes exactly as they would be on Show Day (this is when official photographs are taken, so you want your dancer to look their best).
  • The dress rehearsal is CLOSED; nobody except the Director and Stage Crew may be in the auditorium at any time;
  • Only dancers about to perform and backstage staff can be anywhere in the backstage area (this is separate from the Dressing Room, where all are welcome);
  • If you have ordered tights, leotards or other dancewear that you haven't received yet, these will be available for pickup at Dress Rehearsal outside the dressing room;
  • The dressing room is open and not segregated.  If you are concerned about modesty, wear appropriate undergarments (leotard);
  • Costumes and accessories may not be taken out of the dressing room under any circumstances.  Your dancer will be given their costume in the dressing room by a Volunteer, and the costume must be taken off and returned to the Volunteer in the dressing room.
The Nutcracker Information Page on the AOD Website is still the best place to find all Nutcracker-related information

Hair and Makeup

It's not that hard once you know how

All dancers need to wear stage makeup for Dress Rehearsal and Show Day.  Stage makeup is not meant to be understated.  The bright lights on stage wash out even the most olive complexions. Lay it on thick.
Here is a great video guide for applying dance makeup.
Makeup Tutorial for Stage - Makeup Tips for Dance, Pageant, Skating and Cheerleading
Putting hair in a bun can be intimidating for the uninitiated.  It's easy once you know how.  The secret to quick and easy buns?  The correct tools!  A bun form, bun pins (NOT bobby pins) and a bun net are all you need.
Instruction for making a hair bun using a bun form and bun net.  
There's a separate video for making buns without a bun form.
How To Make A Perfect Ballet Bun
Tights, leotards, bun nets, bun pins and other accessories are available from the concession table.

Show Day Tips
You've made it to Saturday.  Now what?

  • The doors and box office to the venue will open 1 hour before each show, and entrance to the auditorium will open about 30 minutes before each show;
  • If you have purchased your tickets online, please print them out at home.  This will make ticket processing and seating a lot quicker;
  • Dancers in Act I (Party Guests, Mice, Soldiers & Snowflakes) can arrive up to an hour before the show, but no later than half an hour before the start of the show (by 10:30am for morning show and by 2:30pm for afternoon show);
  • Dancers in Act II should arrive by the start of the show, but no later than 30 minutes after the start of the show (by 11:30am for the morning show and by 3:30pm for the afternoon show);
  • If you're still not sure which Role/Act your child is in, you can view the cast lineup here.  This also lists the costume, hair, makeup, tights and shoes for each role.
  • The venue is Biddeford Middle School, 25 Tiger Way, Biddeford (click for map).  The auditorium is directly through the main school entrance.
Still don't have your tickets?  Seating is assigned, so the sooner you book the better your choice of seats.  Book your tickets online or at the box office starting an hour before each show.

Video & Photography
Great outside the auditorium, but not inside!

The choreography of the production is copyrighted, and no video recording of the show is allowed under any circumstances (this includes taking video on a camera phone, iPod, iPad, etc).  
Professionally shot and edited DVDs of the both morning and afternoon performances of the Nutcracker are available for just $25 for both shows.  Order forms are available at the concession stand, or you can order directly online here.  Pre-order if you can as DVDs will be $30 on the day of the show.
For the enjoyment and comfort of the performers and fellow audience members, photography is strictly prohibited in the auditorium.  This is not meant to be punitive, but we do take it seriously.  Sit back and enjoy the show.... we are taking close up pictures of all our performers during Dress Rehearsal.  All these pictures will be posted online as soon as possible and will be made available to all our studio families for free.

We also have our own full color mini Nutcracker photo backdrop that will be set up in the Dressing Room.  You can take pictures of your favorite nutcracker dancer in costume in front of a nutcracker backdrop and next to a life-size Nutcracker statue.  We promise that's going to beat any blurry shot of your dancer that you would get if you tried to take a picture from way up in the audience....
If you haven't yet received your Thirty-One fundraising order these will be available for collection from the concession table at Dress Rehearsal.
Copyright © 2016 Academy of Dance, LLC, All rights reserved.

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