11th Annual Hope for the Holidays

Nov 15, 2011 in General News


Tulsa Ballet Gives the Gift of The Nutcracker
to Hundreds of Local Families for the Holiday Season

TULSA, Okla. – Nov. 14, 2011 – Tulsa Ballet treats more than 2,000 local social service clients and non-profit agencies with its 11th annual Hope for the Holidays on December 9, 2011, at 7 p.m. at the Tulsa Performing Arts Center. Dancers grace the stage for the first The Nutcracker performance of the season dedicated to sharing holiday cheer to this special audience.

“I know Christmas is here when Hope for the Holidays takes to the stage at the PAC,” Tulsa Ballet Artistic Director Marcello Angelini said. “Seeing the enthusiasm of so many children at the show, hearing them laugh out loud, listening to their roar at the end of the Russian dance in act two, experiencing their ingenuity and eagerness when I see them playing, eating cookies in the PAC corridors during intermission - this all reminds me of why we are in the arts. It is to bring joy, emotions, sense of accomplishment and culture to the people who care to interact with us. It is to create a sense of Christmas not only during the holiday season but every time the curtain rises on one of our shows.”

Popular holiday characters such as The Nutcracker and Frosty the Snowman greet the audience members and welcome them to a memorable ballet evening, complete with live music provided by the Tulsa Symphony Orchestra. For clients from LIFE Senior Services, Hope for the Holidays awakens the magic of the holiday season.

“It’s wonderful to share a special evening at the ballet with many seniors in the metropolitan area,” Senior Center Coordinator Jan Dunkelberg said. “The ballet is enjoyed by seniors from LIFE’s Senior Centers at Southminster and East Side and by residents from our Vintage Housing Senior Residential Complexes. Many thanks to Tulsa Ballet for offering Hope for the Holidays to Tulsa—the evening is an event to be remembered throughout the year.”

Clients from LIFE Senior Services say, “Seeing The Nutcracker truly makes it feel like Christmas.” “When we had a young family, we would go to The Nutcracker—this continues our family tradition.” “Everyone is so happy to be at the ballet—we love the music, the dancing and the entire evening.”

Tulsa Ballet volunteers from The Barre Society and The Cygnet Society offer a hand in ensuring a magical experience for all.

The Barre Society is Tulsa Ballet's membership group for adults under 40. The mission of The Barre Society is: To stimulate interest for dance in young professionals, encourage philanthropy and volunteerism, allow an insider's view of a world-class ballet company, and provide exclusive social and networking opportunities throughout the ballet season. Becca and John Salmon have been Barre Society members for many years and enjoy the volunteering aspect of the group – especially with Hope for the Holidays.

“My husband and I look forward to volunteering at Hope for the Holidays every year; it's one of our Tulsa Christmas traditions,” Barre Society member Becca Salmon said. “We love seeing all of the kids dressed up and the families enjoying themselves. It's a great opportunity to expose people to ballet in Tulsa. Hope for the Holidays is also something The Barre Society has a great time participating in as a group. It's a fun way for us to help give back to the community and spend time with each other.”

The Cygnet Society of Tulsa Ballet is an educational outreach program specifically created for eighth grade girls. The program is designed to offer interested young ladies the privilege of experiencing an insider's view of the art. One former Cygnet from the 2010-2011 class enjoyed volunteering with her peers through Hope for the Holidays.

"Helping with Hope for the Holidays Tulsa Ballet event was a neat experience and great way to give back to the community,” former Cygnet Maddi Hassell said. “It was nice to be a part of something that helps those who aren't nearly as fortunate as me to attend and be treated to a special holiday event. It was a great bonding experience with the other Cygnets and it helped open our eyes to what many people's lives are like."

Tulsa Ballet offers thanks to The Robson Companies, The Anne and Henry Zarrow Foundation, The Barnett Family Foundation and The Maxine and Jack Zarrow Foundation for presenting this special performance of Tulsa Ballet’s The Nutcracker. Refreshments are courtesy of QuickTrip convenience stores and Hiland Dairy. Without their generous support, we would not be able to offer this treat to so many Tulsans who need a little holiday cheer.